Why did they free Anwar?

— P. Ramakrishnan
The Malaysian Insider
Jan 18, 2012

JAN 18 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s acquittal and discharge could not have earned the judiciary any brownie points. Neither did the trial judge, Justice Datuk Zabidin Mohd Diah, come across as someone capable of blazing a new trail in proactive justice.

In fact, the court proceedings only disappointed Malaysians the way the judge denied the defence the many crucial notes they were entitled to, dismissed their right to question the prime minister and his wife by granting their application not to appear as witnesses, and refused to recuse himself as the presiding judge by dismissing Anwar’s application that he was biased in the proceedings.

He even strengthened this belief by concluding at the end of the prosecution case that Saiful was a “truthful and credible witness” without even hearing the defence side of the case. The bias was so blatant and so obvious.

Who can forget the doctor who testified under oath at the trial? He wilfully refused to refer to his notes in a deliberate attempt to deny the defence his notes.

In spite of Karpal Singh coaxing him to refer to the notes while testifying, he stubbornly refused to look at his notes. The question arises, why would he want to deny the defence access to his notes? Was he coached not to refer to his notes? What was in those notes that would have been helpful in Anwar’s defence that they desperately wanted to hide?

Again, the way Anwar’s DNA was obtained was questionable and unethical. In spite of Anwar having assured the police that he would turn up at the police station to give his statement, he was waylaid, arrested and taken to the police station as if he was a common criminal. And they unnecessarily kept him overnight to obtain his DNA surreptitiously. Indeed that was how they obtained his DNA.

Anwar’s objection to the admission of his DNA was initially allowed because it was obtained by trickery. But later the judge allowed the DNA as an exhibit following the prosecution’s appeal.

So when the judge acquitted Anwar at the end of the trial, his decision was a clear contradiction to the way the case had progressed and proceeded. Going strictly by the court proceedings, Anwar should have been convicted. There were no two ways about it. The court decision took everyone by surprise.

The entire proceedings went against Anwar thus allowing an injustice to prevail. It created the unmistakable impression that the court was colluding with the executive to put away Anwar for good.

Widespread anger

So why was Anwar freed?

While the prosecution went all out to obtain a conviction, the powers-that-be could not ignore the sentiment on the ground. There was wide-spread anger and frustration among a wide-ranging spectrum of the population.

I was on my way to keep an appointment at the General Hospital in Penang on January 9, when I was informed of the outcome, moments after the judge had delivered his verdict to acquit and discharge Anwar. I met so many people at the hospital, the majority of whom were Malays and who were total strangers. When I told them that Anwar was freed, all of them without an exception praised God and were openly very happy.

I called my friend in Kuala Lumpur and related my experience with these people. I was told that this euphoria was not confined to Penang only but was felt everywhere in KL and elsewhere in the country.

With this kind of sympathy and support for Anwar, a guilty verdict and a prison sentence would have outraged all these people. The backlash arising out of this injustice would have punished the Barisan Nasional mercilessly in the 13th General Election.

Political motive?

According to many observers, it was a political decision to go after Anwar with this trumped up charge as he was seen as a threat to the BN’s continued domination of Malaysian politics. Now it was also a political decision to free him in order to mollify the public anger against the BN.

But if this was their strategy for the time being, will they allow Anwar the freedom to roam around the country, galvanising the people and spreading the wings of Pakatan all over Malaysia?

It is very likely that they would want to appeal this verdict and knowing the trend of the judiciary — you win round one and lose round two — the appeal would be allowed. In this way they can keep Anwar tied down with the court cases and continue to harass him giving him little rope to campaign effectively.

But this raises a serious issue. Who will decide if the prosecution should appeal? Following the norm, that decision is with the Attorney General, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail. But would that be fair to Anwar?

In the first sodomy trial, Manjit Singh who was representing Nallakaruppan revealed that Gani Patail had asked Nallakaruppan to incriminate Anwar offering a plea bargain. This incident should disqualify Gani Patail from deciding on the question of appeal. Apparently there would be a case of conflict of interest.

But the best decision is for the executive and the judiciary to accept the decision of the High Court and bring a closure to this unhappy event. There would be no justification for wasting countless hours of the court and unnecessarily incurring huge further costs in pursuing this case.

If the A-G proceeds with the appeal, the inevitable conclusion would be that it is a case of political vendetta against Anwar, plain and simple. It would debunk the claim made by some that the verdict showed the judiciary is independent. It would only establish the fact that nothing has changed in the judiciary. The rot has permeated beyond repair and redemption.

Hope only lies in a change of government for a better Malaysia and a better future for Malaysians. — aliran.com

  1. #1 by yhsiew on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 3:52 pm

    They freed Anwar because GE13 is coming mah!

  2. #2 by yhsiew on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 4:01 pm

    The freeing of Anwar was a POLITICAL decision and not a JUDICIAL decision. Hence the appeal will not take place.

  3. #3 by mendela on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 5:20 pm

    let’s start Bersih 3.0.
    We need to build momentum.
    KJ and the gangs worry the most is another round of uprising!

  4. #4 by Jeffrey on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 6:19 pm

    //The freeing of Anwar was a POLITICAL decision and not a JUDICIAL decision. Hence the appeal will not take place.///- yhsiew.

    If it were a political decision not to anger a large section of the electorate before an imminent election, then logically there should not be an appeal as it would re-activate the anger that the initial political decision to acquit is supposed to avert. If an acquittal decision were lesser of two evils, then to mitigate and balance against the allegation of politically motivated prosecution, they would have to laud themselves on the independence of judiciary to contradict allegations to the contrary. The idea of an independent judiciary is one that delivers a fair verdict based on law and justice without fear or favour and one cannot take advantage of the argument that one’s judiciary is independent and fair and yet appeal against its fair and independent verdict because that would make the government appears unfair and vindictive. There is also a prescribed time limit for appeal -(14) days – and the expiry of that will be before the election! To appeal (within 14 days) before the election is stir anger again. So, on the balance of considerations, an appeal is unlikely and politically disadvantageous. It is illogical unless hardliners’ pressure wins the day.

  5. #5 by Loh on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 6:36 pm

    ///But this raises a serious issue. Who will decide if the prosecution should appeal? Following the norm, that decision is with the Attorney General, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail. But would that be fair to Anwar?///–P. Ramakrishnan

    Mamakthir in his blog claims that Saiful Bukhari Azlan has the right to appeal. Mamak implied that Saiful had acquired the right because he did swear properly in a mosque. Thus even though Sodomy II was a case between government of Malaysia and Anwar, Mamakthir claimed that Saiful has the right to appeal as victim. Thus Mamakthir ignored the law of the country, as usual. The AG will have no role on the matter.

    Mamakthir hailed judicial independence on the outcome of the verdict. He now wants Anwar convicted on appeal. The claim of judiciary independence was to him a proof that the judiciary process in the country has never been affected despite his actions. He wants Anwar convicted so that he needs not migrate.

    Anwar said that he was able to forgive. Anwar should keep in mind all the time that the rule of law should not be relegated by his ability to forgive. According to rule of law, only the Rulers have the authority to forgive, after conviction by the the Court. The persons who violated the law should have to answer charges in the Court.

    The beauty about absolute monarchy was that recompense is swift. Corrupted officials who considered that they could keep their ill gotten wealth for generations find that the state is the final beneficiary. We have the laws, or the parliament can pass such laws to make corrupt persons surrender their ill gotten gains. Only when corruption is seen to be non-rewarding could it be minimized.

  6. #6 by monsterball on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 7:04 pm

    They jail Anwar..BN will loose more votes.
    Free him…make everyone happy…Najib was hoping voters will swing to support BN…fast chance!!
    Now he is quiet as a mouse….and Ambiga spoke out..accusing Najib trying to kill her…events leading to BERSIH 2.
    These are the TRAITORS Najib referring to…..bloody childish..cunning… idiotic PM he is.

  7. #7 by monsterball on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 7:23 pm

    No where in the developed and developing world supporting free elections have such politicians like UMNO b buggers that always talk to fool Malaysians and must win to govern at all cost.
    That’s not an elected people to govern at all.
    That’s their rewards to succeed fooling Malaysians…plus their phantom votes..all ghosts .more than a million…all support UMNO b.
    But with 4 States….taken away…and no majority after 12th GE…Najib is showing UMNO b true colors.
    The ways Najib is fighting to win 13th GE…are strange and confusing at times.
    It is like fighting for his life…exactly like what he said.
    Never seen any politicians in any free country talk like that.
    It is so clear…..CORRUPTIONS are real and factual …rouges and thieves they are…all exposed…win with their lives or many will face terrible criminal court cases…with evidences.
    They found out…the 2 million young voters…all want change…and that’s it…TRAITORS are exposed.
    It now leave to the final process of casting votes.
    When will it be….Najib?
    Why so long….Malaysians waiting and waiting.
    What is this…..”People First. Performance Now” ???…..that you don’t mean what you say and say what you mean.
    What kind of a PM is you?….a puppet on the string?

  8. #8 by drngsc on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 9:04 pm

    We all know that it was a politically motivated crime and so the judgement is a political one too. No one is too surprise. It was a “Jib kor” decision.

    The losers are the judiciary and another blackeye to the BN/UMNO government.

    It is time we give the government a blackeye

    We need to change the tenant at Putrajaya. GE 13 is coming soon, is our best chance/ Failure is not an option. Do not be over-confident. We must continue to work very very hard.

  9. #9 by raven77 on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 9:20 pm

    If Government doctors can wilfully lie and cheat on medical evidence just to protect the government of the day….this country is going no where..

  10. #10 by monsterball on Wednesday, 18 January 2012 - 11:55 pm

    So many doctors go into politics….joining MCA in particular…and working for the Govt…dare not open their own clinics and behave they are working forever under UMNO b ..to protect their good boss….for their jobs and selfish reasons…hoping to get promotions for being such loyal people…lying and defending UMNO b…their boss.. …all for selfish reasons.
    So many doctors involved politics are giving bad name to the medical profession….so do many lawyers..also.
    It purely selfish blighters with degrees.

  11. #11 by monsterball on Thursday, 19 January 2012 - 12:28 am

    The tale of a Govt. Employed barber {he cuts the hair of Ministers} While hair cutting, Govt. Employed Barber asked Najib…”What’s this Swiss Bank issue?”
    Najib shouted..”you are cutting hair or making inquiries?”
    Barber: “Sorry Sir I just simply asked”
    Next day while cutting the hair, he asked DPM, “Sir, what’s this Black Money issue?”
    DPM shouted “Why do you ask this question?”
    Barber: “Sorry Sir, just simply asked you.”
    Next day MACC interrogated the Barber, “Are you an agent of PKR?”
    Barber: “No Sir”
    CBI::..”Are you an agent of Anna?”
    Barber:.. “No Sir”
    MACC: “Then while cutting the hair ,why you ask Ministers about Swiss Bank and Black money issues?”
    Barber:..”Sir the reason is when I asked about Swiss Bank or Black Money, the Ministers hair stand up straight, and that helps me to cut their hair easily”

  12. #12 by k1980 on Thursday, 19 January 2012 - 7:55 am


    The above photo reminds everyone of–
    A. Ali Baba
    B. Hasan Ali
    C. Comical Ali
    D. Ibrahim Ali

  13. #13 by k1980 on Thursday, 19 January 2012 - 7:57 am

    Those who can’t get the right answer for #12, please click below. May the force be with you


  14. #14 by dagen on Thursday, 19 January 2012 - 9:11 am

    Yawn. Yawn.

    Ahhh. Dont we all know umno well enough? And the sort of illegal tactics umno is capable of? And and including murders?

    Tell you wat. Look here bradder. Its all about the wrong tree! And about barking at that wrong tree. No doubt anwar united the opposition parties and banged together a decent front to counter umno. But that was then. Now the movement is no longer about anwar. Of course people are still passionate about anwar but the opposition movement to take over putrajaya has by now gained its own momentum – fueled no doubt by the people’s utter disgust with umno and not so much (in fact very little) by anwar issues.

    And the wrong tree which umno picked and barked at was that one plain tree which bears the equation pakatan = anwar. Flooring anwar would then means destroying pakatan completely. How wrong! Hey umno, pakatan = ABU + equality + justice + freedom + good governance + two party system. If you want to know how we look at you, umno = corruption + power craze + suppression + inefficiency + murders + malaysianising aliens from poor third world countries by the hundreds of thousands.

    “Alamak” “Celaka betul” “Salah pokok”. Those anjing sukum of umno must hv discovered by a stroke of chance rather late in the day. And so you see freeing anwar is all about backtracking the wrong move and about damage control and face saving for umno. But how could umno has got it so so very wrong. Arrogance. Blinded by power and greed. Umno somehow believed that 308 was a mere slap on the hand for having misbehaved. So no worries there and the great umno orgy can still go on. “Celaka” Umno must have discovered by now that things are not quite like that. So in panic umno directed the judge the free anwar.

  15. #15 by boh-liao on Thursday, 19 January 2012 - 5:35 pm

    Free AI so dat ful of sai n his father can ASK UmnoB gomen 2 APPEAL, they want d ars hole 2 b famous entry port

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