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PUTRAJAYA: Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (pix) said that the arrest of a South Kelantan Development Authority (Kesedar) officer, believed to be in connection with a recent criminal breach of trust case, can affect the image of the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development (KKDW).

Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Minister of Rural and Regional Development, said the ministry will not compromise on the aspect of integrity.

He said such misconduct must be prevented from recurring because the ministry is an agency that is close to the people, especially those in rural areas.

“Just because of one person, the perception of the organisation will turn negative. We cannot compromise on issues regarding integrity involving corruption, breach of trust, embezzlement or personal interests,” he said during his speech at the KKDW 2022 Excellent Service and Appreciation ceremony, here, today.

On Saturday (May 27), the media reported the arrest of an assistant accountant of Kesedar, an agency under KKDW, to assist in investigations into a criminal breach of trust case involving a loss of RM24.8 million.

Preliminary investigations found that the act was carried out from 2016 to May 2023 involving 194 money transactions from Kesedar’s Development Fund and Trust Fund accounts to the accounts of companies owned by the suspect, totalling RM24,800,189.73.

While praising the achievements of the KKDW since he took over the ministry seven months ago, Ahmad Zahid said the momentum must be maintained and improved to ensure it is one of the best ministries.

“I hope all of you in KKDW will continue to maintain the culture and momentum of excellence to ensure the ministry continues to excel and becomes a driver of change in developing communities in the villages,” he said.

He also urged high-performing employees to help their low-performing colleagues to emulate their good work practices and characteristics in carrying out their tasks.

“This can be done via mentoring as well as guidance from supervisors, department heads and high-performing officers in the organisation,” he said. - Bernama