Yong supports check on siphoning of funds

KUCHING: Deputy Works Minister Datuk Yong Khoon Seng said yesterday he supported action by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to check on the siphoning of federal funds meant for projects in Sarawak.

He agreed that MACC must investigate and get to the bottom of the matter.

a�?The federal government is giving a lot of funds to Sarawak for projects, big or small, which are for the benefit of the people. If therea��s any wrongdoing, MACC should take action.

a�?The funds are for the people, and we must make sure that it reaches the people and is not being diverted elsewhere.A� We should stop these misdeeds and wrongdoing, and I fully support any action by MACC,a�? he told reporters after launching the new Nissan Navara six-speed manual transmission model at TC Motors (Sarawak) Sdn Bhd here.

Yong said he agreed that the state government should also conduct its own investigation into the possibility that allocations from the state had also been diverted.

a�?In my opinion, we must make sure the rakyat get the benefits from the funds. Thata��s what the funds are meant for,a�? he said.

Yong, who is also Stampin Member of Parliament, was commenting on the revelation made last week by MACC deputy chief commissioner (prevention) Datuk Zakaria Jaafar that up to 60 per cent of funding for some government projects in Sarawak were diverted elsewhere.

Last Tuesday, state MACC director Samsiah Abu Bakar revealed that a syndicate, comprising high-ranking government officers and a company director, was behind the siphoning of federal funds amounting to millions of ringgit.

She disclosed that seven individuals, who are civil servants, contractors and middlemen who have been linked to the syndicate, were detained under Section 18 of the MACC Act, 2009.

According to her, the suspects, who operated as a group, were active in Kuching, while the a�?molea�� had access to a list of federal projects, and had been released on bail pending completion of the investigation before being charged in court.

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