Azam Baki: No corruption in Zahid’s Youth grant allocation in Terengganu

MALAYSIAN Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki stated that the agency did not uncover any signs of corruption in Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s announcement of a RM100,000 grant for Persatuan Belia Gabungan Lembaga Kemajuan Terengganu Tengah (Ketengah), along with an additional RM250,000 allocation for the Malaysian Terengganu Youth Council.

Azam said his side saw the grant from the ministry at the federal level. 

“This is a ruling government that can implement initiatives it deems appropriate for the people.  In my opinion, there is no problem regarding the grant issue because it is a government initiative.

“So if the allocation initiative has been approved by the government, there is no element of corruption,” Sinar Harian quoted him as saying.

Moreover, he added that this type of allocation is not a form of bribery.

Meanwhile on Friday (July 28), MUDA Kuala Terengganu division lodged a police report against Zahid for alleged misuse of his ministry’s allocation to attract youth votes a day before nomination day of the state election (PRN). 

On the same day, the Rural and Regional Development Ministry (KKDW) agreed to allocate the amount of funds to Ketengah for the purpose of developing the group’s activities in Terengganu. 

MUDA president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman criticised Zahid for offering “sweeteners” (allocations) as a means to garner votes in the PRN. He called it a “normalisation of corruption” when expressing his concerns on Twitter.

Zahid has defended his statement, asserting that the allocations are essential to providing support for the youth in the country.

The DPM denied he was trying to normalise corruption as alleged by the MUDA president. 

“He (Syed Saddiq) can say whatever he wants, but what is important is that the youth need sufficient allocations to carry out their activities. Whether it’s youth associations at the district, state, or even the Malaysian Youth Council,” the Bagan Datuk MP told reporters at a press conference in Kota Bharu, Kelantan. – July 30, 2023

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