Archive for January 13th, 2012

Malaysia’s Najib Readies for Vote

by James Hookway
Wall Street Journal

Malaysian leader Najib Razak pointed to the acquittal this week of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim as evidence he’s serious about political reforms, even inviting an election battle that could propel him out of power.

Eager to paint himself as a leader of the Malaysia’s most sweeping political reforms since independence, Mr. Najib appears to be betting that the judiciary’s release of Mr. Anwar would help rather than hurt him politically.

Three days after Malaysia’s High Court acquitted Mr. Anwar on sodomy charges this week, Mr. Najib said in an interview Thursday that both the government and opposition camps will step up their race to claim the center-ground of Malaysian politics in the coming months—but that this will only strengthen the predominantly Muslim country and provide a fresh example that democracy and Islam can coexist. Read the rest of this entry »


Acquittal a teaser to another conviction

Mohd Ariff Sabri Aziz| January 13, 2012
Free Malaysia Today

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad will want Anwar Ibrahim stopped at all cost.COMMENT

Anwar Ibrahim is not out of the woods yet. Despite being acquitted, Anwar is circumspect about the judiciary.

His acquittal does not prove the judiciary is independent, he said.

In an interview with Al Jazeera, Anwar said this present case should not be considered as a landmark case representing the independence of the judiciary.

Now, that is somewhat ominous. Why would Anwar say that?

Anwar knows this: he is let off the hook this time – that’s what the government may want the public to think. So that they can say, this is proof that the judiciary is independent. Read the rest of this entry »


The party’s over

By Mariam Mokhtar | January 13, 2012
Free Malaysia Today

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak was aware of the consequences of Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim being jailed. With limited choices, he was forced to choose the unpalatable option of having Anwar acquitted.

In doing so, Najib’s reputation may have been enhanced, his party Umno-BN saved from the brink of annihilation at the polls and, most important of all, the creation of the powerful and feared martyr (Anwar), was neutralised.

For Anwar, acquittal meant he could concentrate on leading the opposition and making sure the government performs. Sodomy II was designed by Umno to be a distraction, for him and the rakyat. Valuable time and resources had been wasted on this sham trial which was designed to wear Anwar and the rakyat down.

Najib must think us fools to believe that Anwar’s acquittal signalled an independent judiciary. What about the many other cases which have been rigged in the past? Teoh Beng Hock, Aminulrasyid Amzah, Ahmad Sarbani, A Kugan.
Read the rest of this entry »