The introduction of the Public Sector Governance Act and Integrity Plan provides a clearer guide to civil servants in the efforts to combat corruption, in line with the aspirations of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to ensure good governance, experts say.

The National Professors Council Governance, Law and Management Cluster head Dr Nik Ahmad Kamal Nik Mahmood said the country is ready to embrace a more effective legislative reform towards the development of Malaysia MADANI.

He said the introduction of the act can have a positive impact and establish effective laws, especially for those in the public sector. However, the main challenge is how it will be implemented, he noted.

“When we talk about regulations for the public servants, normally they are in the forms of procedures and code of conduct, but now, governance has been turned into law. If it’s law, what is the actual governance that must be followed?” he told Bernama when contacted.

Meanwhile, political analyst Prof Datuk Dr Ismail Sualman suggested that the act should be drafted objectively and comprehensively, covering those who give and receive bribes.

“Each government department will have an integrity unit, and from there, we can implement this act. If they violate the regulations, they will be brought to court,” he said.

Legal and constitutional expert Prof. Madya Dr. Khairil Azmin Mokhtar said the idea to expand the implementation of the system to private entities demonstrates a well-run government administration.

The law lecturer at the International Islamic University Malaysia said he hoped that the government’s plan would be successfully implemented, adding that the process of drafting the act should involve all stakeholders.

“It will convince investors, local or foreign, as it will reassure them that Malaysia’s business and financial system has transparency.

“So, the more mechanisms (that a country has) to ensure transparency and corporate responsibility, the more confident are the investors that the country has transparency. It will then strengthen the economy. When there is less corruption, the expectation of investment and costs become clearer because there are no hidden costs,” he said.

On Monday, Anwar, when tabling the Mid-Term Review of the 12th Malaysia Plan in Dewan Rakyat, introduced the Public Sector Governance Act and Integrity Plan as a guide on corruption-free governance for all entities, both public and private.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency