Thursday 31 May 2012

Rafizi waived right not to incriminate self

PKR strategic director Rafizi Ramli freely avowed his responsibility to Bank Negara investigators for disclosures that would render him liable to be charged for offences under the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (Bafia).

PKR vice-president N Surendran, who accompanied Rafizi when the latter was summoned yesterday by the central bank for questioning, said Rafizi was heedless of the stricture against self-incrimination a potential accused is entitled to.

NONE"Rafizi freely avowed he was responsible for disclosures of the bank accounts of companies and individuals involved in the cattle-breeding project that has been the subject of media scrutiny because of suspected misappropriation of public funds," revealed Surendran who is Razafi's legal counsel.

Section 97 of Bafia protects the confidentiality of bank accounts and statements. Disclosures would render an accused liable to a jail term and a hefty fine.

According to his lawyer, Rafizi was unfazed by the potential consequences of his disclosures and his admission of responsibility for them.

Surendran explained: "He feels the very fact that criminal prosecutions based on his disclosures are now proceeding in the courts vindicate his decision to make those disclosures that now expose him to charges under Bafia."

Doing a civic duty

The PKR veep said the objective of Section 97 of Bafia was to protect the confidentiality of bank accounts, but it did not entail the protection from public scrutiny of fraudulently obtained funds from public sources, which is a bigger crime in any moral calculus.

"That is why Rafizi did not hesitate to admit his responsibility for the disclosures for without them criminal charges would not have been preferred against individuals now arraigned in the courts," said Surendran.

Surendran said Rafizi is willing to bear the consequences of his "performance of a civic duty to protect public funds from fraudulent abuse."

"He obeyed a higher call and in the process left himself exposed on lesser counts," opined Surendran.

NONEOn March 12, National Feedlot Corporation chairperson Mohamad Salleh Ismail was charged in a sessions court in Kuala Lumpur with two counts of criminal breach of trust and two offences under the Companies Act 1965 involving a total of RM49.7 million, related to the purchase of two luxury condominium units.

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