Malaysian PM Anwar Ibrahim Responds To Critics, Defends Appointment Of Daughter
After appointing his daughter, Nurul Izzah Anwar, as an adviser, Malaysian Prime Minister (PM) Anwar Ibrahim was accused of nepotism and corruption.
He defended the appointment, clarifying that she has a limited role with no opportunities to enrich herself.
In addition, he pledged his administration’s willingness to cooperate with any corruption investigations.
Malaysian PM Anwar Ibrahim defends appointment of daughter
According to The Star, Mr Anwar addressed critics of his daughter’s appointment as a senior adviser to the PM on economics and finance.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday (31 Jan), he stated that she would have very limited power in her role. Furthermore, she would have no opportunities to enrich herself.
“Her job is to help me ensure new contracts and tenders are properly managed,” he said.
She will not have the power to take on or directly manage any projects or tenders herself.
PM Anwar added that Ms Nurul Izzah indicated her eagerness to assist. The appointment would thus allow her to work in an official capacity.
“If she came to help me without being given an official position, people would question her intentions even more severely than they do now,” he said.
According to Free Malaysia Today, he also argued that her appointment was not due to nepotism, stating:
Nepotism is where (a family member) is given a position to abuse power, enrich themselves, obtain contracts and get paid a huge sum. This is not the case.
He added that past PMs and ministers who awarded family members with “hundreds of millions of ringgit” worth of contracts were in “no position” to talk about transparency.
Will cooperate with investigations
Anwar said he would do everything in his power to improve Malaysia’s Corruption Perception Index ranking, The Star reports. In 2022, it dipped to the 47th spot from the 48th in 2021.
“I will personally guarantee that there will be no acts of corruption, bribery or misuse of power during my term as Prime Minister,” he said.
I also pledge my administration’s willingness to fully cooperate with any investigations launched by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
Several opposition politicians have criticised Ms Nurul Izzah’s appointment, such as Perikatan Nasional chairman Muhyiddin Yassin.
According to The Star, he said PM Anwar should advise her to step down.
Kedah’s chief minister Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor has also questioned the appointment.
On Tuesday (31 Jan), The New Straits Times (NST) quoted him as stating, “I am wondering if the Prime Minister is trying to set a new benchmark so that all politicians and their children can get involved in the government without pay.”
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Featured image adapted from Anwar Ibrahim on Facebook and @n_izzah on Instagram.
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