Nigel Aw (Mkini)
1:25PM Sep 18, 2012
The French probe into alleged kickbacks in the Malaysian government’s procurement of Scorpene submarines will continue regardless of the clampdown on Suaram, the human rights NGO said today.
“We have just been informed by our lawyers that the Scorpene case will continue even if the government decides to charge us or do anything else to us.
“The action will have no bearing on our case in France,” Suaram secretariat member Cynthia Gabriel said when contacted.
Cynthia also criticised Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s announcement that the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) will recommend to the Attorney-General’s Chambers today the charges to file against Suaram’s vehicle Suara Inisiatif Sdn Bhd.
“When Ismail made that announcement, the directors on our board and executive directors were still in the CCM headquarters, being questioned.
“How can the minister make his conclusion when the investigation is still going on in the CCM building? It is unwarranted and questionable,” Cynthia said.
‘Nothing wrong with Suara Inisiatif’s accounts’
Suara Inisiatif directors Kua Kia Soong and Yeoh Seng Guan, Suaram executive director E Nalini and its management and finance coordinator Diane Savari were until 1pm today still being questioned by CCM officers.
Cynthia also rebutted Ismail’s claim that the accounts of Suara Inisiatif were “confusing” and that its activities were inconsistent with what had been reported in its accounts.
“We have sat down with the company secretary and auditors and gone through the accounts, we have found nothing wrong.
“We have also gone through this with officers from CCM. We maintain that there is nothing wrong with our accounts,” she added.
Cynthia said that if the CCM was confident that Suaram’s vehicle had done wrong, it should not hesitate in coming clean on what was the exact charge that the commission wants to bring against the NGO.