1. A Member of Parliament, Rafizi Ramli was found guilty by our courts and sentenced to 18 months jail for breaking our Official Secrets Act by publicly distributing material from the Auditor-General’s Report on 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).
2. A stay of execution has already been granted pending Rafizi’s appeal process and he remains free to discharge his duties..
3. Prior to Rafizi’s offence, five members of parliament from our federal opposition, who are members of our Parliamentary Accounts Committee (PAC), has had full access to this document,
4. This document was one of the many sources of information which was used to come out with the final PAC report which was eventually released to the public in April of this year
5. What Rafizi exposed was neither an act of whistle-blowing nor did he “expose” anything materially important about 1MDB.
6. Despite being warned not to do so, Rafizi had distributed materials from this AG Report, which was marked as Official Secret then to “prove” that 1MDB had a business relationship with our Armed Forces Pension Fund (LTAT).
7. He had also alleged that due to this relationship, certain outstanding payments from 1MDB to LTAT had caused the pension fund to come under financial pressure resulting in 110 persons out of 450,000 veterans not receiving their gratuity payments in time.
8. However, the fact that 1MDB had contracted LTAT to build 8 military bases and to relocate an existing air base has been public knowledge since 2013 when this contract was publicly announced.
9. Both LTAT and 1MDb had also clarified that there were no outstanding or late payments.
10. LTAT also clarified that the out of 70 persons out of the 110 that was submitted by Rafizi were already paid while the balance 40 were not paid then due to incomplete or late submission of documents.
11. Rafizi has a track record of making allegations that later turned out to be untrue. In October, he had lost a civil case to for defamation of a private company.
12. Despite being fully aware that he would be breaking the law and despite being repeatedly warned, Rafizi deliberately used a document that was classified to further his own political agenda to “expose” something that was already public knowledge in order to support his allegations that were later found to be untrue.
13. Malaysia is not unique in having legislation to protect government confidentiality and no country can operate with citizens deliberately breaking the law and being allowed to get away with it.
Lim Sian See