KUALA LUMPUR: A DAP lawmaker was called "stupid" in Parliament today after remarking that the country's corruption perception level was worsening.
Nga Kor Ming (DAP-Taiping), citing the Corruption Perception Index, said Malaysia's position in the rating had dropped to its "lowest since independence".
"Is the government willing to lead by example? Is the Cabinet willing to declare assets to prevent graft and ensure that the MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) is a truly independent body?" he asked in the Dewan Rakyat this morning.
To this, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan said it was true Malaysia's corruption was indeed worsening, as Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng was charged with corruption.
"This is because the Penang chief minister was charged (in court for corruption) and this is part of the corruption perception.
"If you want to help the government improve the index rating, please ask Lim Guan Eng to resign," he said.
Outraged, Nga fired back and asked "What about MO1?"
This sparked a commotion in the august house, with Datuk Othman Abdul (Barisan Nasional-Pendang) calling Nga bodoh (stupid) multiple times.
"Bodoh. Lim Guan Eng was charged. Don't be biadap (rude).
"MO1 was not charged," he said.
Deputy Speaker Datuk Seri Ismail Mohamed tried to calm them down, saying that this was the last day of the sitting, and urged them to sit down.
After the shouting match, Rahman told Nga that he was only responding with facts, that the DAP secretary-general was in fact charged.
"You asked a question loaded with political insinuations, but when I answered with facts, you melatah (became hysterical). Relax," he added.
Rahman said making public declarations of assets was not a good indication of a graft-free government and did not mean that there were no cases of corruption.
He said if the leader practised corruption, he would have placed the assets under his wife, children, proxies or cronies.
"Just because a state or party declares their assets publicly does not mean that they are corruption-free.
"We (the government) have a system and it is a good one. The MACC has access to all the declarations by ministers and it is up to them (to take action), without going through the prime minister."