KUALA LUMPUR – Internal investigations will be held over any issue and scandal connected to the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) before action is taken against those involved, said the new Defence Minister, Mohamad Sabu.
Mohamad said he needed to get the complete information of all MAF services before looking in detail at issues and scandals within the MAF, including the purchase of the Scorpene submarines as well as other issues which were raised by non-governmental organisations.
“We will investigate. If it is based on hearsay, it can have a negative effect on the image of individuals or departments. If there are (issues and scandals) with evidence obtained from detailed investigation and internal audits and, if necessary, we will use external audits, and if serious, we will take it to the Cabinet. We will not act wildly based on what we hear,” he told reporters at his first press conference at the Defence Ministry here today.
On the setting up of the King Salman Centre for International Peace, Mohamad said he would discuss it with the Prime Minister before a decision is made.
He also said that every policy which was good for the MAF staff would be retained while those with some weaknesses would be improved or discussed with the top brass of the force like the Defence Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Abdul Rahim Mohamad Radzi and Chief of Defence Forces Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor.
“We will work together to find the best ways, what is good we will continue, and what is weak, we will jointly improve. During the first week, I will be focusing on briefings by all parties in the sections of MAF,” he said.
Mohamad, who started work as the new minister today, was welcomed with a salute-of-honour at Dataran Wisma Pertahanan in Jalan Padang Tembak.
He was welcomed by Abdul Rahim and Raja Mohamed Affandi with whom he later held a meeting.
The Kota Raja MP, who is president of Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah), was among the 13 ministers who were sworn in before the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Muhammad V, at Istana Negara yesterday.
Mohamad, who is more popularly known as Mat Sabu, said he was nervous on his first day as the new Defence Minister but added that he would be maintaining his casual approach. – BERNAMA