The Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) has recently proposed the enforcement of ‘Misconduct for Civil Service Act’ to regulate civil servants, who through their acts or omission have caused substantial financial losses to the government.
The MACC has proposed that such civil servants should face criminal charges for their negligence and non-compliance with rules and procedure that are set out within the public office.
Apart from preventing corruption, the rationale behind this new law is to allow transparency so that the public would be informed of the actions that will be taken against corruption among the civil servants.
Whilst this is a relatively new proposal and there were no specific laws in place that provided for prosecution of an individual following a misconduct apart from the mere disciplinary actions that can be taken by the Public Services Department or the relevant departments, it is disputatious as to whether there is a need for this new law, or if the disciplinary actions are sufficient.
Arguably, the bureaucracy system within the public office may make the process of taking disciplinary actions within relevant departments a difficult and tedious process. Further, it is also important that the department which decides actions preventing corruption is independent from the department that the alleged individual is from, hence emphasising the importance of the proposed law that would bestow upon MACC the power to prosecute individuals who cause losses to the government through their negligence, misconduct and non-compliance with requirements and procedure.