PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has opened a total of 379 investigation papers and arrested 425 individuals as of April this year.

MACC Chief Commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki (pix) said in the first quarter of this year alone, the Commission had seized RM12.58 million worth of assets and a total of RM59 million in forfeitures.

“Last year, MACC opened 829 investigation papers which resulted in 851 arrests with the total assets seized stood at RM162 million, and forfeited amount of RM5.13 billion,” he said in his keynote address at the 3rd Malaysian Anti-Corruption Forum here today.

Also present was the chairman and founder of the International Strategy Institute (ISI) Cheah Chyuan Yong. The forum was organised by ISI with the aim of finding efficient means to move forward against corruption.

In his speech, Azam also urged private companies and corporations, either local or foreign, to take advantage of the tax deduction for organising Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes related to corruption prevention and education.

He said by organising such programmes, the companies are eligible to apply for tax deduction from the gross business income an amount equivalent to the amount of expenses incurred to such programmes, that to be done in collaboration with MACC.

“The tax relief incentive under Section 34(6)(h) of the Income Tax Act 1967 is to encourage more private companies to collaborate with MACC to conduct anti-corruption programmes which will benefit the public including at schools and higher learning institutions,” he said.

On the 1MDB asset recovery efforts, Azam said another RM5.11 billion worth of assets had been recovered by the way of settlement and MACC will continue to further recover more stolen assets from the perpetrators. - Bernama