Archive for category Constitution

Nation grieves at the passing of Sultan of Kedah, who was twice Yang di Pertuan Agong

The nation grieves at the passing of the Sultan of Kedah, who made history for being twice the Yang di Pertuan Agong of the country.

When I first entered Parliament in February 1971 when Parliament was reconvened after being suspended for 21 months after the 1969 general election, Sultan Abdul Halim was the Yang di Pertuan Agong from 1970 to 1975. He served his second term as Yang di Pertuan Agong more than three decades later from 2011 to 2016.

Sultan Abdul Halim endeared himself to the nation as the people’s King.

The nation and people are in deep bereavement over Sultan Abdul Halim’s passing.

(Media Statement in Kuala Lumpur on Monday, 11th September 2017)

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Najib’s statement on “Give us two-thirds to end unilateral conversion” is the Prime Minister’s second most irresponsible and morally reprehensible action after the international 1MDB money-laundering scandal which turned Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy

I am shocked beyond words by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s most cynical, contemptible and hypocritical urging to women to give Barisan Nasional to rule with two-thirds majority if they would like to see the proposed Section 88A introduced in the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act (LRA).

This is Najib’s second most irresponsible and morally reprehensible action under his premiership after the international 1MDB money-laundering scandal which turned Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call for three Royal Commissions of inquiry – into 1MDB, Felda scandals and what happened in Government in the last week of July 2015 – to convince Malaysians that RCI like national institutions are not being abused by Najib to play politics

This is the RCI season, with a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) probing into the Bank Negara forex losses a quarter of a century ago, while the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak is toying with another RCI of even longer vintage – the Memali Tragedy on Nov. 19, 1985 or 32 years ago – which claimed 18 lives, four of whom were police personnel.

RCI are useful instruments to discover the truth and promote transparency, accountability and good governance.

Similarly, national institutions like Parliament, Judiciary, the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the Police, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC0), Bank Negara and the Auditor-General’s Office have important national purposes and roles to play provided they, like RCI, do not become victims of misuse and abuse of power – not to promote the truth, accountability, transparency and good governance but become the political playthings and power play by the Prime Minister and the incumbent establishment against political opponents.

I call for the immediate establishment of three Royal Commissions of Inquiry, viz: Read the rest of this entry »

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Is Raus prepared to allow his peers in Federal Court to pronounce on the constitutionality of his re-appointment as Chief Justice?

The self-serving justification by Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif on his controversial re-appointment as Chief Justice through the unconstitutional backdoor of being appointed as “additional judge” under Article 122(1A) of the Constitutiion must have nagged many Malaysians in the last few days, as it does not seem to be right and proper.

Raus said his reappointment as Chief Justice was “unprecedented” but constitutional.

He said there is always a first time for everything, and that when something happens for the first time, there is bound to be many differences in opinions.

Raus sad that despite these differences in opinions, in the end, it is up to the court to decide on the constitutionality of the appointment.

“Lawyers always disagree. It is nothing strange for lawyers to disagree on the interpretation of the constitution.

“It happens every day in court,” he said.

Raus’ justification is to smug, self-serving and wrong that it was all right to have different opinions whether his re-appointment as Chief Justice is constitutional or not.

Why can’t we have a situation where all jurists and lawyers as well as informed Malaysians are in unanimity about its consitutionality? Read the rest of this entry »

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The great mission to save Malaysia from continuing in the trajectory of a failed and rogue state is more important than the lies, fake news and false information of UMNO/BN leaders, propagandists and cybertroopers

What are the big news of today. There are several jostling for lead position.

They include the following:

First, 1MDB missed the new deadline to pay US$628.75 million (RM2.69 billion) to Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC) after a five-day extension from July 31.

The first deadline was set in a settlement between 1MDB and IPIC in April in order to avoid an arbitration process over monies owed to IPIC.

Abu Dhabi’s IPIC has given 1MDB until Aug 31 to make a US$603 million debt settlement payment that was due yesterday, plus interest.

However, IPIC said 1MDB was obliged to pay at least US$310 million by Aug 12, according to the company’s regulatory statement to the London Stock Exchange.
The IPIC statement yesterday stated that 1MDB and MOF Inc are to pay an undisclosed amount of “default interest” for the delay.

Have 1MDB and MOF Inc to pay the two “default interest” for the two delays and how much do they come to?

The international news about 1MDB and MoF Inc missing two debt-payment deadlines can neither be a boost to foreign investors nor cause for Malaysians to feel proud of the country, after suffering for two years under the infamy and ignominy of a global kleptocracy. Read the rest of this entry »

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As Attorney-General is principal legal adviser to the government and not the final arbiter of law, had he advised the Prime Minister of Article 130 of the Malaysian Constitution to seek Federal Court opinion on whether Raus and Zulkefli’s re-appointment as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President are constitutional or otherwise?

The Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohd Apandi Ali has finally spoken on the new constitutional crisis he had helped to precipitate as the principal legal adviser to the Federal Government, declaring that the re-appointment of Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif as Chief Justice and Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as Court of Appeal President are constitutional.

But these are just superfluous words, for clearly, without the Attorney-General’s approval and sanction, the Prime Minister’s Office would not have issued the controversial media statement dated 7th July 2017 announcing the unconstitutional extension of tenure of Raus and Zulkefli’s as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President respectively following their unconstitutional appointment as “additional judges” under Article 122(1A).

What the Attorney-General has written in his article in Berita Harian yesterday declaring that the re-appointment of Raus and Zulkefli as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President respectively are constitutional does not add anything new to the arguments in the controversy as Apandi only repeated run-of-the-mill arguments defending the reappointment of Raus and Zulkefli in the two top judicial posts in the land as constitutional.

Apandi can go to the rooftops and shout a thousand times that the re-appointments of Raus and Zulkefli as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President respectively are constitutional – but this does not necessarily make them constitutional. Read the rest of this entry »

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Unless Raus could defend as “unprecedented but constitutional” his re-appointment as Chief Justice in August 2020 for another three years using the unconstitutional backdoor of “additional judge”, how could he justify his present re-appointment?

Yesterday, I asked “Chief Justice” Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif a specific question: “Would it be constitutional and proper for Raus to continue to be appointed as ‘additional judge’ in August 2020 to extend his tenure as Chief Justice for another three years?”

Raus has yet to answer. I await his answer. But I want to ask him a further question:

“Unless Raus could defend as ‘unprecedented but constitutional’ his re-appointment as Chief Justice in August 2020 for another three years using the unconstitutional backdoor of ‘additional judge’, how could he justify his present re-appointment?” Read the rest of this entry »

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Would it be constitutional and proper for Raus to continue to be appointed as “additional judge” in August 2020 to extend his tenure as Chief Justice for another three years?

In reply to the question whether he should have declined re-appointment as Chief Justice under circumstances where the weight of legal and informed opinion are quite united in regarding it as unconstitutional, Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif said the issue does not arise.

He said: “Why should I decline? Because the government is of the view that the government needs our services…so they went through the process.”

Raus cannot be more wrong, as he knows that his claim that his re-appointment as Chief Justice is constitutional though unprecedented is open to challenge.

A chief justice of a country should not act like a “cantakerous litigant” arguing over every possible point of law, however far-fetched or ridiculous. Read the rest of this entry »

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The revelation by former Chief Justice Tun Zaki that extension of Raus’ tenure as Chief Justice was made without recommendation of Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) makes the extension not only unconstitutional and unprecedented but most improper

The newly-reappointed Chief Justice Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif has conceded that his reappointment is “unprecedented” but said that it is still constitutional.

However, he left the final decision on the constitutionality of his position to the court.

This is indeed doubly unprecedented – leaving the country with a Chief Justice who is believed by the Malaysian Bar through a emergency EGM and many jurists, including many serving and former top judges in the land, unconstitutionally occupying the top judicial post in the land for the next three years.

Surely, there can be no greater blow to the independence, impartiality and professionalism of the judiciary than for the country to have a judiciary which is headed by a person for next three years enmeshed in a controversy about the constitutionality of his extension of office?

A top judicial officer who cherishes unquestioned respect for the rule of law and unblemished standing of the judiciary not only in the eyes of the bench and bar but the Malaysian populace would want to spare the judiciary from the agony of a controversy lasting for the next three years over the constitutionality of the extension of the Chief Justice of the land.

The revelation by former Chief Justice Tun Zaki Tun Azmi in an article in New Straits Times yesterday that Raus’ extension as Chief Justice was made without recommendation of the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) has made Raus’ reappointment as Chief Justice not only unconstitutional and unprecedented, but even most improper. Read the rest of this entry »

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Raus is the only person today who can save the country from an ugly constitutional crisis

Will today, August 4, 2017, go down in Malaysian history as one of the nation’s black days of infamy when the country fell into the pit of a major constitutional crisis testing the Merdeka Constitution 1957 and Malaysia Agreement 1963 as to whether the nation can remain true to the basic principles of nation-building spelt out in the Merdeka Proclamation 1957 and Malaysia Proclamation 1963?

Two days ago, Pakatan Harapan leaders led by Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad (Bersatu), Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (PKR), Mujahid Yusuf Rawa (AMANAH) and myself (DAP) petitioned the Yang Di Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V to refer the government’s decision to extend the tenures of the two top judicial posts, the Chief Justice and the Court of Appeal President, to the Federal Court.

Article 130 of the Malaysian Constitution on “Advisory jurisdiction of Federal Court” states:

“130. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong may refer to the Federal Court for its opinion any question as to the effect of any provision of this Constitution which has arisen or appears to him likely to arise, and the Federal Court shall pronounce in open court its opinion on any question so referred to it.”

The tenure of Tan Sri Raus Sharif as Chief Justice ended yesterday while the tenure of Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as Court of Appeal President ends on Sept. 27. Read the rest of this entry »

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Will Cabinet tomorrow ask Zahid to reaffirm his oath to “preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution, including Article 4 on Malaysian Constitution as the supreme law of Malaysia?

Will the Cabinet tomorrow ask the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi to reaffirm his oaths as Deputy Prime Minister and Member of Parliament to “preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution, including Article 4 on the Malaysian Constitution as the supreme law of Malaysia?

In response to the Court of Appeal ruling that a child conceived out of wedlock can take his or her father’s surname, and that the edict on this by the National Fatwa Committee does not have the force of law, the call by Zahid for Muslim unity to oppose anyone challenging decisions by the National Fatwa Committee is contrary to what Zahid had sworn in his oaths of office as DPM and MP to “preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution.

Zahid is not only challenging the authority of the civil courts to make decisions affecting the life and liberty of Malaysians, but dishonouring his oaths as Deputy Prime Minister and Member of Parliament to “preserve, protect and defend” the Malaysian Constitution.

The Cabinet tomorrow should ask Zahid to retract his statement which challenges Article 4 of the Malaysian Constitution declaring unequivocally that the Constitution is the “supreme law” in Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »

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With MCA and Gerakan joining more UMNO leaders “whistling in the dark” to hide their increasing panic, 14th General Election more likely this year than next

Since the seismic development on July 14, when Pakatan Harapan Presidential Council announced the Pakatan Harapan structure, logo and leadership line up, signifiying the final Mahathir-Anwar reconciliation after nearly two decades of political enmity, the past 16 days have seen increasing panic among UMNO/Barisan Nasional leaders about the very real prospects of losing Putrajaya and the Federal Government in the forthcoming 14th General Election.

As a result, even MCA and Gerakan leaders are joining more UMNO leaders in resorting to “whistling in the dark” to hide their increasing panic, shouting from their rooftops that they are not panicking!

MCA President, Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, for instance, is suddenly putting up a bold front proclaiming in Penang that MCA is confident that there will be a change of support among voters in Penang as the people have lost confidence in the DAP for failing to fulfil their promises after taking over the state nine years ago while declaring to the 45th annual general meeting of the Young Malaysians Movement in Kuala Lumpur that MCA believes that the Chinese community is shifting its support back to Barisan Nasional.

Gerakan President Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong announced the Gerakan’s three candidates to contest the Segambut, Batu and Kepong parliamentary seats and declared that Chinese votes for Barisan Nasional are expected to improve to 30% in the 14th General Election from the 13.4% received in the 2013 polls.

It is indeed a great national tragedy and shame that at a historic period when the nation is on threshold of a possible change of Federal government in six decades, MCA and Gerakan leaders have fallen to such a parlous level that they could only indulge in “whistling in the dark” hoping to win more electoral seats depending on UMNO, instead of being focused on the great issues confronting the people and country. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ban on G25 Book on “Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” marks Najib’s break with five previous Prime Ministers and the rising influence of PAS President on government policy

I am very disappointed that the Cabinet had again proved to be an utterly incompetent and useless outfit, incapable of addressing the great issues of the nation.

I had suggested that the Cabinet meeting last Friday should speak up for a moderate Malaysia for a change, suspend the Home Minister’s ban on G25 book on “Breaking the Silence –Voices of Moderation: Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” and form a high-level committee to hold public hearings whether the book should be banned.

But the Cabinet, the latest personification of the traditional three monkeys with eyes that see not, ears that hear not, and mouths that speak not, completely ignored the issue and there was no statement post-Cabinet on the corrective measures on the shocking, ridiculous and illogical ban on the G25 book.

The ban on G25 Book on “Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” in fact marks Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s break with five previous Prime Ministers – Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Husein, Tun Dr. Mahathir and Tun Abdullah – on the basic cornerstone of the nation as enshrined in the Malaysian Constitution and reiterated in the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and the rising influence of PAS President, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang on government policy, with regard to Islamic matters. Read the rest of this entry »

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Can the BN Sabah and Sarawak Ministers and MPs be trusted to uphold Sabah and Sarawak interests when they dare not openly declare their support for Malanjum as Chief Justice of Malaysia?

The President of the Sabah Council of Datuks, Claudius Roman, said that Sabah may have to wait 100 years to produce another judge as gifted as Richard Malanjum.

He said the Council, which is made up of serving and former senior leaders of the public and private sectors, political organisations and NGOs. had unanimously agreed on Wednesday that Malanjum was the most qualified member of the Malaysian judiciary for the post of chief justice.

The question is whether the Ministers and MPs from Sabah and Sarawak dare to tell the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, that Sabah will have to wait 100 years to produce another judge as gifted as Richard Malanjum.

This is most unlikely as how can the Barisan Nasional Ministers and MPs from Sabah and Sarawak be trusted to uphold Sabah and Sarawak interests when they dare not openly declare their support for Malanjum as Chief Justice of Malaysia, especially as next Thursday on August 3 will be deadline for the appointment of a new Chief Justice. Read the rest of this entry »

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Cabinet today should speak up for a moderate Malaysia for a change, suspend the ban on G25 book and form a high-level committee to hold public hearings whether the book should be banned

The reported ban on G25 book on “Breaking the Silence –Voices of Moderation: Islam in a Constitutional Democracy” is so extraordinary and unbelieveable that the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi must confirm whether he had authorized such a ban and why.

This book is produced by G25, comprising former high-ranking Malay/Muslim civil servants, civic leaders and politicians first formed in December 2014 to call for a rational dialogue on the position of Islam in a constitutional democracy as they are deeply concerned over developments regarding race relations, Islam and extremist behaviour in Malaysia.

In the Open Letter in December 2014 signed originally by 25 prominent personalities, including former secretaries-general, directors-general, ambassadors, judges and prominent Malay individuals who have contributed much to Malaysian society, their spokesperson, Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin, former Malaysian Ambassador to the Netherlands, said she and the others were “deeply concerned about the state of the debate on many issues of conflict on the position and application of Islamic laws in Malaysia”.

Stressing that it was time for moderate Malays and Muslims to speak up, and that “extremist, immoderate and intolerant voices” do not speak in their name, she said:

“Given the impact of such vitriolic rhetoric on race relations and political stability of this country, we feel it is incumbent on us to take a public position and urge for an informed and rational dialogue on the ways Islam is used as a source of public law and policy in Malaysia”.

She also urged more moderate Malaysians to speak up and contribute to “a better informed and rational public discussion on the place of Islamic laws within a constitutional democracy and the urgency to address the breakdown of federal-state division of powers and finding solutions to the heart-wrenching stories of lives and relationships damaged and put in limbo because of battles over turf and identity”.

Now with the ban of G25’s book, what does it imply?

Will G25 itself, comprising former top prominent Malay/Muslim civil servants and public servants and which has since expanded to double its original number but has decided retain the name of “Group of 25” or “G25”, as this is the name that the Malaysian public is familiar with, be next to be banned, signifying a major setback for the cause of a moderate Malaysia and the triumph of extremist and intolerant forces in the country?

Does the ban of G25’s book signify a far-reaching and even seismic transformation in the nation-building directions in the country, where what had been regarded as being in the “out-boxes” for the past six decades have made a grand entrance into the “in-boxes” and what had been in the “in-boxes” under five Prime Ministers from 1957 to 2009 under Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein Onn, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and Tun Abdullah Badawi have now been relegated to the “out-boxes”? Read the rest of this entry »

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Call for a common strategy by the 10 Cabinet Ministers and 57 MPs from Sabah and Sarawak in next week’s Parliament to ensure that the first appointment of a Chief Justice from Sabah and Sarawak is not voided and by-passed

The 10 Cabinet Ministers and 57 MPs from Sabah and Sarawak should meet before Parliament reconvenes next Monday on 24th July to work out a strategy to ensure that the first appointment of a Chief Justice from Sabah and Sarawak in the sixth decade of the formation of Malaysia should not be voided and by-passed.

The unconstitutional extension of the tenures of Tan Sri Rau Sharif and Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President on August 3 and Sept. 27 respectively will be detrimental to the cause of Malaysian nation building.

The by-passing of the opportunity for the appointment of the first Chief Justice from Sabah/Sarawak will be exploited by those in Sabah and Sarawak who are attacking the Federal Government in Putrajaya as too Peninsular-centric and unable to take full account of the vision of Malaysia as a federation where the rights and interests of Sabah and Sarawak are given full respect and recognition. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call on BN Sabah and Sarawak Ministers and MPs to take a common and united stand with Pakatan Harapan MPs for the appointment of Richard Malanjum as the new Chief Justice of Malaysia

I said at the DAP Miri’s “Bangkit Miri, Undi Harapan” 14th General Election Preparation dinner on Friday night that the unconstitutional extension of the tenures of Tan Sri Rau Sharif and Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President on August 3 and Sept. 27 respectively will be detrimental to the cause of Malaysian nation building.

The by-passing of the opportunity for the appointment of the first Chief Justice from Sabah/Sarawak will be like “manna from heaven” and exploited by those in Sabah and Sarawak attacking the Federal Government in Putrajaya as too Peninsular-centric and unable to take full account of the vision of Malaysia as a federation where the rights and interests of Sabah and Sarawak are given full respect and recognition.

This unconstitutional extension of the tenures of Raus and Zulkefli is totally indefensible, undermining not only the sanctity and integrity of the Malaysian Constitution and the vision of Malaysia as a federation where Sabah and Sarawak are fully integrated and not treated as step-brothers, it would also undermine the promotional opportunities and prospects of at least eight Federal Court judges, including three women!

As the most glaring injustice of the unconstitutional extension of the tenures of Raus and Zulkefli is the by-passing of the opportunity to appoint the first Chief Justice from Sabah and Sarawak in the person of Tan Sri Richard Malanjum, I call on all Barisan Nasional Ministers and MPs from Sabah and Sarawak to take a common and united stand with Pakatan Harapan MPs for the appointment of Richard Malanjum as the new Chief Justice of Malaysia. Read the rest of this entry »

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Extension of Raus as Chief Justice after August 3 not only unconstitutional but deny Richard Malanjum as the first Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak to be appointed as Chief Justice of Malaysia

It must be a matter of grave concern to all patriotic Malaysians that the integrity and sanctity of the Malaysian Constitution is receiving less and less respect from the powers-that-be, and the latest example of an incipient constitutional crisis in Malaysia is the illegal and unconstitutional extension of the tenures of Tan Sri Raus Sharif and Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President on August 3 and Sept. 27 respectively.

The extension of the tenures of Raus and Zulkefli are not only unconstitutional, but would affect the promotional opportunities and prospects of at least eight Federal Court judges, including three women.

But the most glaring injustice of the unconstitutional extensions will be the denial of the opportunity of Tan Sri Richard Malanjum as the first Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak to be appointed as Chief Justice of Malaysia.

Malanjum is in fact the most senior Federal Court judge in the country, more senior than both Raus and Zulkefli. Read the rest of this entry »

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If there is a secret ballot among the hundred-odd judges in the three tiers of judiciary, the overwhelming majority will uphold the constitution and support the position that it is unconstitutional to extend the tenures of Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President

Thanks to the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said for admitting clearly that the appointment of Chief Justice Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif and the Court of Appeal President Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin as additional judges so that they can continue as the two top judges in the country were made on the advice on Tun Arifin Zakaria on March 30, his last day as Chief Justice before his retirement.

Article 122(1A) in the Federal Constitution has not been complied with in the appointment of Raus and Zulkefli as as “additional judges”, unless the Chief Justice in office at the time of the appointment had also advised the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the matter.

Raus is the Chief Justice at present. Did he advise the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the appointment of himself and Zulkefli as “additional judges” under Article 122(1A) of the Federal Constitution, which reads: Read the rest of this entry »

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Was Shafee involved in former Chief Justice Arifin’s advice for the unconstitutional appointment of Raus and Zulkefli as “additional’” judges after the duo’s compulsory retirement to unconstitutionally extend their tenures as the two top judges in the land

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim threw a bomb from Sungai Buloh Prison when he questioned if prominent lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah was involved in the extension of Chief Justice Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif and Court of Appeal President Justice Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin’s respective tenures.

I full agree that if this is true, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak should come clean on the matter.

This will put Shafee’s comments on the constitutional controversy over the extension of Chief Justice and Court of Appeal President in a very different light – making Shafee’s comments most self-serving and lacking in the candour and professionalism expected of a senior and prominent lawyer. Read the rest of this entry »

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