Archive for category Anwar Ibrahim

Najib should come to Permatang Pauh before polling day for a “1MDB scandal – Answer All Questions” Dialogue or he should seek a motion of confidence when Parliament re-convenes on May 18 to demonstrate he still commands support of the majority of MPs

One of the mysteries of Permatang Pauh by-election is not only the disappearance of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, but also his posters, which like his two Prime Minister predecessors, had always pride of place in all previous Barisan Nasional by-election campaigns – and invariably given greater prominence than the contesting Barisan Nasional by-election candidate.

But this is not the case in Permatang Pauh. Has the Barisan Nasional leaders come to a stage where they are embarrassed about the presence of the Prime Minister, even his posters?

Is the disappearance of the Prime Minister and his posters in the Permatang Pauh by-election an eloquent testimony that Najib had got very serious things to hide from the voters of Permatang Pauh?

The voters of Permatang Pauh have a right to chant: Where is the Prime Minister? In particular with regard to his accountability and answers to the endless questions which are being asked by Pakatan Rakyat leaders and recently, former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir about the “mother of mother” of all financial scandals in Malaysia – the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal? Read the rest of this entry »

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Five key issues in the Permatang Pauh by-election on May 7

The Permatang Pauh parliamentary by-election has five key issues, not only for the voters in the constituency, but for all Malaysians, viz:

1. As a clear and unmistakable vote, not only behalf of the people of Permatang Pauh, but of 30 million Malaysians, against the continued victimisation and persecution of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, with his second jail sentence and disqualification as an elected MP, and an unequivocal and categorical call for Anwar’s immediate release from jail.

2. Rejection of GST imposed on April 1 as imposing hardships on the people at large, demanding that the 6 per cent tax be abolished. Read the rest of this entry »

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Anwar Ibrahim’s conviction lowers the bar on the Malaysian legal system

Amanda Whiting, University of Melbourne
East Asia Forum
13 April 2015

These are dangerous times for the rule of law in Malaysia. The Federal Court’s decision on 10 February 2015 to affirm Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s criminal conviction for ‘carnal intercourse against the order of nature’ is shocking, but entirely predictable.

For a while, it seemed that domestic and international condemnation of the harassment of Anwar and the political misuse of draconian laws against opposition politicians and social activists had worked to improve Malaysia’s legal system. The United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) government appeared to have taken on board the response to the 1998–2004 ‘Sodomy I’ legal proceedings against Anwar, and broader criticisms of its authoritarian rule. But the ‘Sodomy II’ proceedings and their aftermath suggest otherwise. Read the rest of this entry »

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Repression in Malaysia – Disconnect

Apr 11th 2015

A thuggish government is playing racial politics. Najib Razak should be dressed down

MALAYSIA’S prime minister, Najib Razak, paints his country as a model of moderate Islam —a multicultural democracy and a beacon of tolerance. He has spoken of scrapping oppressive British-era laws and nurturing a creative economy. Meanwhile, his spin-doctors explain that their liberal master is the man to vanquish the reactionary forces in his political party, UMNO, which has never been out of power and which is prone to cronyism and political thuggery. Barack Obama, for one, buys this story. He is the first American president since 1966 to have visited Malaysia. And late last year in Hawaii he enjoyed a round on the golf links with Mr Najib. The two men are said to click. The White House gushes about a “growing and warming relationship” between America and Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s Creeping Authoritarianism

Wall Street Journal
March 16, 2015

Malaysian politics are moving down a dark path. A month after the country’s highest court upheld the conviction of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on trumped-up charges of sodomy, police on Monday arrested Mr. Anwar’s daughter for violating the Sedition Act, a colonial-era law increasingly used to chill political debate.

Nurul Izzah Anwar’s apparent offense was to criticize the judiciary last week in Parliament, where she is opposition vice president. In addition to reading a statement from her father condemning his trial as a political conspiracy, Ms. Nurul Izzah condemned Malaysia’s Federal Court for “bowing to political masters” and being “partners in a crime that contributed to the death of a free judiciary.”

Western diplomats have also criticized her father’s prosecution. “The decision to prosecute Mr. Anwar, and his trial, have raised serious concerns regarding the rule of law and the independence of the courts,” the U.S. State Department said last month. Read the rest of this entry »

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Anwar jailing could hurt both opposition and Najib

Yang Razali Kassim
East Asia Forum
14 March 2015

The jailing of Anwar Ibrahim following a second sodomy conviction could trigger a chain of events that could shake up Malaysian politics. Unlike after his first jailing in 1998, the opposition, which he leads, is already split and could crumble. But this may well play out as Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is currently under siege within his ruling United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), fights for his own survival. Anwar currently is serving a jail term of five years for what he maintains was a political conspiracy by his enemies, including Prime Minister Najib.

Unless pardoned by the Malaysian King, the verdict could well end the 67-year-old Anwar’s political career. Besides losing his parliamentary seat, by the time he is released, he would be 72 making any political comeback difficult. But the former deputy prime minister has in the past proven to be like a cat with nine lives — and might just have one more. His family’s move to petition for a royal pardon was unexpected, but that prevented Anwar from losing his parliamentary seat pending the King’s decision. Anwar did not make the appeal, insisting on his innocence.

In 2000, two years after he was sacked as deputy premier following a clash with then prime minister Mahathir Mohamad over the handling of the Asian financial crisis, Anwar was jailed for his first sodomy conviction. He was released four years later when that conviction was overturned by the court. Anwar countered his latest court verdict with a vow to continue his fight from behind bars, thus promising to turn himself into a political martyr. Read the rest of this entry »

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Removal of Free Anwar petition an error, says US embassy

The Malaysian Insider
11 March 2015

The White House made a mistake when it removed a petition posted on its website urging the Obama administration to free jailed opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, said the United States Embassy in Malaysia.

It said today that the White House standard fraud checks indicated a high number of anomalous signatures on a petition related to Anwar’s imprisonment, but because of the multiple petitions on the issue, it had mistakenly taken down the free Anwar petition.

“There were multiple petitions related to this issue, and after follow-up assessment, The White House determined that the petition it removed was not the one that contained fraudulent signatures,” the US embassy posted on its Facebook page.

“To account for the error, the White House has since re-enabled the petition titled ‘Make the Release of Malaysian Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim from Prison a Top Priority for US Policy Toward Malaysia’, and is extending the deadline to account for the time lost while the petition was disabled. No signatures were removed.”

It said the White House later determined that the fraudulent signatures existed in the petition ‘Respecting the Sovereign Nation of Malaysia’, and had temporarily disabled it from the website. Read the rest of this entry »

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#KitaLawan protest attracts the angry, the creative and the nonchalant

by Anisah Shukry
The Malaysian Insider
7 March 2015 8:51 PM

Amid the chants of ‘Reformasi’ and ‘Undur Najib’‎ at today’s #KitaLawan rally outside Sogo in Kuala Lumpur, one tiny, elderly woman could be seen shuffling among the crowd, angrily smacking the banners held up within her reach.

“Stop it!” she cried in Malay, her dark, wrinkled face pulled into a scowl, as she tried to grab a nearby protester. “You’re being a menace!”

Other rally-goers grinned and nudged each other as she prowled around in her baju kurung, her eyes darting back and forth, an odd figure among the sea of Malaysians dressed in black gathered today to protest opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s imprisonment.

Today’s demonstration drew a mixed crowd of Malaysians, with the numbers surpassing the previous rallies held by the same organisers every weekend for the entire month.

With the exception of the woman, the mood among the thousands who turned up today was largely festive, and their spirits remained unperturbed even as the evening wore on and it began raining intermittently. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why am I ‘wasting’ my time at Sogo on 307?

— Kenneth Cheng
The Malay Mail Online
MARCH 4, 2015

MARCH 4 — I have to be frank, this is by far the worst Chinese New Year that I have ever celebrated, not because Anwar Ibrahim has been incarcerated in what is widely perceived as a travesty of justice or the farcical strategic development company 1MDB that may cripple our economy and financial sovereignty.

It is certainly not the advent of GST which 40 per cent households with an income of less than RM1,500 per month will suffer the most. Additionally, I have learn to turn a deaf ear towards Cabinet Minister’s race inciting hate comments which seek to further divide Malaysia and divert the attention away from his sheer incompetency.

Last but not least, I would expect nothing less than RM1,200 worth of hair treatment from our very dear first lady, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor given her “modest” and prudent financial management lifestyle.

Yet, I was crestfallen during this festive period simply because friends and family who I visited, choose to remain dispassionate and detach themselves from the recent political development of our country. Furthermore, questions arise among my peers concerning the rationale of holding massive #kitalawan protest in Sogo. They generally empathise with the partisans and resolve to punish the corrupt regime in the next General Election, but deem there is no meaning in participating in the social movement.

As much as I appreciate their attentiveness toward this political issue, nevertheless I need to accentuate that social progress is very much attainable by effective social movements, be it small or big. Therefore, with the interest of the amnesiac public in mind, it is of vital importance to revisit history and to remind the rakyat how humanity and society have constantly made substantial progress through social movements. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on Malaysians regardless of race, religion or politics to unite and rally behind the SSS Anwar campaign for 3Saves – to Save Anwar, Save Pakatan Rakyat and Save Malaysia

When Nurul Iman, the second youngest of Anwar Ibrahim’s six children, spoke just now about the injustices, trials and tribulations of Anwar Ibrahim, having to be incarcerated at the age of 67 for the fourth time in his 47 years of public struggle for justice, freedom, human dignity and good governance , I am reminded of my first arrest under the Internal Security Act (ISA) 46 years ago in 1969.

Nurul was eight years old when Anwar was given the infamous “black eye” after he was sacked as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister and detained briefly under the ISA, the heavy price he paid for standing up against the autocratic Prime Minister of the time, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad against corruption, cronyism and nepotism.

When I was first arrested in May 1969, the Chief Minister of Penang Lim Guan Eng was also only eight years old. My other three children were respectively seven, five and three years old.

When the May 13, 1969 racial riots broke out in Kuala Lumpur, I was in Sabah. I was never in Kuala Lumpur after the May 10, 1969 general elections but this has not stopped UMNO propagandists and cybertroopers from continuing with their dastardly campaign of lies and falsehoods especially on social media through tweets and Facebooks alleging that I was in Kuala Lumpur from May 11 – 13, 1969, leading “victory processions” and hurling anti-Malay slogans to cause the May 13 racial riots. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on Najib to announce before Chempaka by-election nomination on March 10 that UMNO will not contest in any Permatang Pauh by-election arising from Anwar’s disqualification to demonstrate his commitment to promote Malaysian unity and not just Malay unity

When the Prime Minister and UMNO President, Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced on Wednesday that UMNO will not contest the Chempaka State Assembly by-election in Kelantan caused by the death of Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, he said this was to promote Malay unity.

I responded in a series of four tweets, viz:

• Expected in my pre-Cabinet Open Letter yesterday;

• Should announce same to show bona fide! No decision on Permatang Pauh yet, says Najib (MMO).

• UMNO decision to stay out of Chempaka welcome but it should herald a virtuous cycle of national unity/reconciliation.

• Make it national unity, not just Muslim unity, Kit Siang tells Umno (MMO).

Najib’s announcement took no one by surprise as it was very much to be expected at this stage of UMNO power play and the plot by certain UMNO leaders to cause a break-up of Pakatan Rakyat by promoting the “UG” (Unity Government) concept of UMNO-PAS Government. Read the rest of this entry »

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Sport, sodomy and Sirul

By Mariam Mokhtar
Feb 23, 2015

Khairy Jamaluddin, the Umno Baru Youth chief, is smarter than we credit him. The fiercely ambitious Oxford graduate is taking the initiative and showing Umno Baru that he can lead.

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak is facing his worst nightmare. His spectre is a Malaysian in an Australian detention centre. Khairy needs to prove that he will be ‘prime minister material’ if the top post becomes vacant.

Khairy is showing signs of being bored with his day job as the youth and sports minister. After Malaysia’s dismal performance in the Olympics, the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games, Khairy’s focus should be on promoting and improving our performance in sport. He should engage more young Malaysians.

Proving that he has too much time on his hands, the minister has instead organised a roadshow. His co-star is the lead prosecutor in the Sodomy II trial, Muhammad Shafee Abdullah (right). They are trying to convince the public that opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s guilty verdict was a just one.

There is probably an ulterior motive to the roadshow. Shafee has his sights set on being the next attorney-general, whilst Khairy is taking pole position in the race to be the prime minister. Read the rest of this entry »

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Will the Chief Justice of Malaysia be leading Federal Court judges to go on nation-wide roadshow to justify and win in the court of public opinion their decisions against Anwar which have not found support among the majority of thinking Malaysians

Will the Chief Justice of Malaysia be leading Federal Court judges to go on a nation-wide roadshow to justify and win in the court of public opinion their decisions against Anwar which have not found support among the majority of thinking Malaysians?

This will the next sequel to the unprecedented, unhealthy and undesirable national roadshow by Tan Sri Muhamad Shafee Abdullah, the lead prosecutor of Anwar Ibrahim’s Sodomy II trial, to character-assassinate, vilify and smear Anwar’s reputation and character although Anwar is languishing in Sungei Buloh prison.

In the second stop of Shafee’s nation-wide road-show on Saturday night in Permatang Pauh, the media were told that they were banned from reporting the event – which was even more unfair to Anwar as it meant that Shafee was at liberty to say anything he liked against Anwar as he was hiding under protection of secrecy from media reports!

Mohd Azmi Abdul, the president of the Malaysian Consultative Council of Islamic Organisations, in his article in Malaysiakini “Let’s stop this ‘Sodomy Politics’, now” summed up not only the objection but the repulsion of ordinary decent Malaysians, Muslim and non-Muslim, at such depths plumbed by those in authority in the vile campaign of character-assassination against Anwar, when he asked: Read the rest of this entry »

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What can I do to free Anwar?

William Leong Jee Keen
Member of Parliament Selayang
23 February 2015

Time for Decisive Action

Tonight is the 13th night Anwar Ibrahim, a prisoner of conscience, with mosquitoes feeding on him is forced to sleep with a spinal injury on the cold hard floor of Sungai Buloh prison. A suffering he has to endure for another 5 years. Like Prometheus, Anwar is punished for giving Malaysians the fire of Hope, opening their eyes to the Truth and unlocking their minds from Prejudices.

Tonight is the 13th night we are holding this vigil to bring to light the injustice Anwar is suffering. They jailed him fearing they will lose the next election. But aiming to free him, will spur us to win.

However, we must work hard. We have fewer than 150 weeks to the next election, fewer than 1,000 nights to put Anwar back, fewer than 25,000 minutes to take firm and decisive action to free Anwar, to free Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on all Pakatan Rakyat leaders, including PAS President Hadi Awang, to focus single-mindedly on how to save Pakatan Rakyat and discourage efforts and elements within our ranks who are prepared to destabilize and even destroy PR

In my Chinese New Year Message on 17th February, I had said that many issues will jostle as the top Malaysian concerns and conversational topics during the Chinese New Year.

This is the third day of the Chinese New Year, and I confess that I had expected Anwar’s conviction and five-year jail sentence for Sodomy II by the Federal Court and his fourth incarceration in his 47-year political struggle as the No. 1 conversation topic of all Malaysians in the Chinese New Year.

I was however wrong, for another issue caught up and gained an edge over Anwar’s conviction and 5-year jail sentence to compete for the No. 1 Chinese New Year top conversation topic – another Federal Court decision concerning a nine-year-matter, the heinous murder of Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu and the blowing up of her body with military C4 explosives in the Shah Alam bushes on Oct. 19, 2006.

On the day I issued my Chinese New Year Message on 17th February, Sirul Azhar, one of the two convicted murderers of Altantunya who had absconded and is seeking asylum in Australia, told Malaysiakini that he was mulling over the possibility of “telling all” about the Altantuya murder as he was only acting “under orders”.

The fast-paced five-day developments of the Altantuya murder case from the Sirul perspective, threatening to reveal “all” in a video conference from Australia tomorrow (Monday) morning, catapulted the issue into a greater cause celebre during the Chinese New Year family re-unions, get-togethers, discussions and coffee-shop talks than the Anwar case – although both these cases were unchallenged as the two top-most first and second conversation topics in the Chinese New Year.

These two high-profile cases highlighted a common defect in our system of governance – a deep rot in the leadership of the 130,000 strong police establishment in not allowing the men and women in blue to act efficiently, independently and professionally to uphold what is right and lawful rather to be subverted to glorify “might is right”’ and the shocking lack of commitment and quality of performance by the political leadership and public service to provide good governance.

I am thoroughly shocked and outraged at the failure of our system of administration of justice in both these high-profile cases in keeping with the maxim to ensure that “justice is not only done, but seen to be done”.

There were several burning issues which qualify to be described as the concerns and top conversation topics of all Malaysians on the occasion of the Chinese New Year of the Goat in the past few days, and among those competing for the second tier level of the Chinese New Year concerns and top conversation topics are: Read the rest of this entry »

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Shafee’s nation-wide roadshow against Anwar no less vile, vengeful and vindictive just because it has become a closed-door event

Tan Sri Mohammad Shafee Abdullah’s nation-wide roadshow against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to try to win in the court of public opinion on Anwar’s conviction and five-year jail sentence on Sodomy II is not less vile, vengeful and vindictive just because it has become closed-door event not to be reported in the media.

Last night, Shafee was in Permatang Pauh for the second stop of his nation-wide roadshow against Anwar, in a talk dubbed “Sejenak bersama TS Shafee Abdullah”, but unlike his first stop of his nation-wide roadshow at an UMNO Youth forum in Kelana Jaya last Tuesday, the media were told not cover or write about the talk.

But Shafee should know that his roadshow against Anwar is not less vile, vengeful and vindictive just it is now closed-door not to be reported by the media, which actually makes it even more deplorable, despicable and unwarranted, as he would be able to “get away with murder” without fear of being challenged whether in the court of law or the court of public opinion.

It is in fact a most cowardly act, embarking on a roadshop clearly detrimental to Anwar’s reputation and character without affording Anwar any opportunity to answer his serious and even wild allegations against the Parliamentary Opposition Leader and former Prime Minister. Read the rest of this entry »

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How much is Shafee paid as lead prosecutor in Anwar’s Sodomy II prosecution and is he also paid for leading a nation-wide road show justify the Federal Court’s decision and to humiliate Anwar?

PAS MP for Sepang Mohamed Hanipa Maidin has asked the government to reveal the actual fees it has to pay to Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah to be lead prosecutor in Parliamentary Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar’s Sodomy II case at the Court of Appeal and Federal Court levels.

Shafee is now spearheading a nation-wide UMNO roadshow to try to win in the court of public opinion in Anwar’s Sodomy II prosecution, as it is abundantly clear that while Shafee had won in the courts in the judiciary, he had lost in two other courts – the court of public opinion in Malaysia and the international court of public opinion.

As Malaysians taxpayers are paying Shafee for his role as lead prosecutor in Anwar’s Sodomy II case at both the Court of Appeal and Federal Court, they are entitled to know how much Shafee is costing them to put Anwar in jail for the fourth time in his 47-year public career fighting for justice, freedom, human dignity and good governance in Malaysia.

Are the services of Shafee as lead prosecutor on Anwar’s case equivalent to the remuneration of the Attorney-General for a whole year, and if so or it approximates the sum, the question arises as to why the Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail is not conducting the prosecution himself instead of privatizing it to Shafee?

Furthermore, Malaysian taxpayers are also entitled to know whether they are also paying for Shafee’s nation-wide UMNO roadshow to justify the Federal Court’s decision against Anwar, as well as to take the opportunity to carry out a vicious and vengeful campaign against Anwar, and if so, the exact full amounts or fees or whether he is rendering his services to UMNO pro bono. Read the rest of this entry »

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Shafee’s unprecedented and most questionable road-show an admission that although he had won in the Federal Court with 5-0 verdict in his favour on Anwar Sodomy II trial, he has lost out in the court of public opinion

Its really so pathetic – Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah going on a UMNO-sponsored national roadshow to have a second “ bite of the cherry” in his prosecution of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on Sodomy II case.

Yes, Shafee has won in the Federal Court on Feb. 10 with a shocking 5-0 unanimous decision to dismiss Anwar’s appeal and to sent him back to jail for five years, Anwar’s fourth incarceration.

Even those who were most pessimistic about Anwar’s chances and had believed before the Federal Court decision that he would lose in the Federal Court appeal had expected either a 3-2 verdict or at worst a 4-1 decision.

Everybody was floored when there was an unanimous 5-0 decision and there were not only no dissenting judgment, there was no other judgment from the five-member Federal Court quorum, apart from the single judgment by the Chief Justice, Tun Arifin Zakaria!

Although Anwar had lost in the court of the Malaysian judiciary, he had won in two other courts – the court of public opinion in Malaysia and the court of international opinion, as it will not be easy to find another Federal Court judgment in the past two decades which had met with such instant universal condemnation, not only inside the country but also outside. Read the rest of this entry »

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Opinion: Anwar imprisoned, Malaysia rights in free fall

Phil Robertson, Special for CNN
February 16, 2015

(CNN)—Watching from the observers’ gallery last week, I could see Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim moving from hope, to exasperation and then finally to anger as the country’s highest court dismissed his defense team’s arguments against his sodomy conviction.

After his appeal was denied on all counts, the sentencing hearing started — and Anwar took the gloves off, declaring the incident was a “complete fabrication” and a “political conspiracy” and attacking the five Federal Court judges for becoming “partners in the crime for the murder of judicial independence and integrity.”

The judges weren’t having any of that, and abruptly stood up and walked out of the courtroom to deliberate in chambers on Anwar’s fate, leaving a stunned courtroom behind them.

Anwar now faces five years in prison to contemplate the question that is on the minds of many Malaysians, which is how could a government get away with prosecuting a former deputy prime minister and the head of the opposition not once, but twice, for violating an archaic British colonial law against sodomy that has been invoked a total of only seven times since 1938?

Has the Malaysian government so clearly lost the plot that even outside observers would recognize that the trial was blatantly political from day one? Read the rest of this entry »

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Law don grills Shafee’s ethics after Anwar attack

By Gurdial Singh Nijar
February 16, 2015

COMMENT Several interviews in national daily newspapers given by the lawyer engaged as a prosecutor, Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, have reignited issues surrounding the conviction of Anwar Ibrahim.

In a rather brutal attack on Anwar, whom he helped put away for a five-year jail term, Shafee implied that the accused would have been torn to shreds if he had testified, instead of giving his ‘evidence’ from the dock. He labelled Anwar a ‘coward with something to hide’.

I do not recall any such condemnatory remarks being ever made publicly by the former lawyers from the Attorney-General’s Chambers who conducted the prosecution at the earlier two judicial tiers – the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

Such statements seem to be at odds with established ethical standards – as applicable to lawyers appearing as defence counsel or for the prosecution. Read the rest of this entry »

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