Corruption does not pay, to the giver and the recipient, says business tycoon Datuk Ameer Ali Mydin. He speaks to AWANI Review’s Zakiyah Koya
The Managing Director of Mydin Holdings claims that he walks the talk on the eradication of corruption by ensuring that every one of his staff knows he means it. “It’s just not halal (acceptable). You cannot be giving money and taking money. We take it so seriously. ”
“When I met the new manager in Mydin Kuching, I only told him, “Take care of the shop, makan duit halal.”” says Ameer Ali.
With corruption being quite an issue in Malaysia – from under the table to openly requesting money to get something done – Ameer says that one must inculcate it into the way of life to imbibe into the people that corruption should not be condoned in any sphere.
He believes that it is probably the way we are being taught the right value system in the schools that there are those who think that it is not wrong to steal, just because they do pray.
Ameer says that one cannot be completely “clean” in their personal life and then be committing the wrongs on the other side.
“I find that is the most important thing in your life. How can you take money (bribe) and then lepas tu, you gi sembahyang? For that matter, I have even caught people stealing and I ask the question, ” Puasa ke ni?” “Puasa.” “Eh, puasa tapi curi? (Fasting? Fasting. Eh, fasting but stealing!)”
Ameer says that he finds it weird that despite them allegedly being religious, they do not find that it is a big sin to steal.
“So, maybe, we are not teaching people the right thing, the right value system. People tend to say, “If you find RM10, what would you do? If you find RM100,000, what will you do? They will say – I think I should find the owner because I think he has lost a lot of money,” says Ameer.
Ameer explained that one should discuss and address the issue of corruption seriously as the country’s ranking on international corruption index has not been good.
Based on Transparency International’s (TI) latest Corruption Perception Index (CPI) in 2016, Malaysia dropped one point to rank 55 among 176 countries, compared to the previous year at 54.
“So, corruption is something very crucial. Unfortunately, our index in Malaysia has gone down. Everybody knows for what reasons. We are not here to be judgmental because we do not have a lot of information or we hear a lot of things – but at the end of the day, we are all going to go six feet underground.”
“We can’t be taking all these money with us. What you leave in this world is only your name. So, if you are corrupted, you have nothing left.”