MACC says to probe ‘Dr Pornthip – Fortune Teller’ blog post

Posted: August 23, 2010 in News
Tags: ,

Source : The Malaysian Insider

By Boo Su-Lyn and G Manimaran
August 23, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 23 – The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has ordered a probe to find out how an offensive article which called Thai forensic expert Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand a fortune teller wound up on its official blog.

MACC officials attempted to minimise the fallout from the flap surrounding the offensive posting after Pakatan Rakyat (PR) politicians used it to accuse the anti-graft agency of being bias.

The blog at ourdifferentview.com had posted an article titled “Dr Porntip Ahli Nujum?” (Dr Porntip a Fortune Teller), complete with an altered picture of Dr Pornthip as a gypsy fortune teller gazing into a crystal ball.

The MACC’s “Dr Pornthip a Fortune Teller?” blog post, which was taken from an anonymous blog at http://www.imrite.wordpress.com, accused Dr Pornthip (picture) of being hired by the Selangor government to testify just to “inflame the rakyat’s anger”.

“We will investigate and we will take the necessary action,” MACC corporate communications director Datuk Ahmad Khusairi Yahaya told The Malaysian Insider today.

He added that they would investigate how the article was posted at MACC’s official blog and stressed that the blog was created to “correct perceptions” towards MACC.

The flamboyant Dr Pornthip had testified twice in the inquest into DAP political aide Teoh Beng Hock’s death.

Her testimony has been particularly damaging to the MACC.

MACC removed the “Dr Porntip Ahli Nujum?” post shortly after The Malaysian Insider requested an explanation on why they posted articles from anonymous blogs.

The national anti-graft body’s official blog at http://www.ourdifferentview.com was launched in May this year to fight negative public perception since the mysterious death of Teoh, a DAP political aide, at MACC’s Selangor headquarters in Shah Alam last July.

MACC deputy chief commissioner (Prevention) Datuk Hajah Sutinah Sutan had cited the abundance of “gossip and inaccurate information” about the agency as the reason for launching their blog, Facebook page, and Twitter micro-blogging account this year.

Commenting on the offensive post today, DAP national publicity secretary Tony Pua said that it was prejudicial to the ongoing Teoh Beng Hock inquest and showed the MACC’s insincerity in their letter of regret to the Teoh family on the anniversary of his death.

Lawyer for the Teoh family, Gobind Singh Deo. also slammed MACC for showing “complete and utter disrespect for the coroner” by posting the article on their official blog.

“It goes beyond prejudicial; it is highly offensive,” said Gobind, adding that the article signalled a “highly embarrassing” act of desperation on the part of the MACC.

Gobind, also the Puchong MP, said that he would still raise the matter at the next hearing although MACC has removed the blog post.

The 30-year-old political secretary to Selangor state councillor Ean Yong Hian Wah was found dead July 16 last year on a fifth-floor landing at Plaza Masalam in Shah Alam, nine floors below the MACC’s Selangor then headquarters.

He had been interrogated overnight by anti-graft officers probing claims his boss was misusing state funds.

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