PETALING JAYA, MALAYSIA, 18 SEPTEMBER 2008
Today Pakatan Rakyat leaders have submitted a letter to the Prime Minister requesting him to call an emergency session of Parliament to deliberate a motion of censure against the leadership of YAB Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi no later than Tuesday 23 September 2008.
This is in accordance with Order 11(3) of the Standing Orders of Parliament and warrants an immediate response given the gravity of today’s political impasse. A delay in his response would be interpreted as nothing short of a further sabotage of the democratic process and abuse of Executive Power.
The Prime Minister’s haggling on the syntax of our first letter is puerile at best. The intent of our meeting as described in that letter was clearly to discuss the future course of the nation’s leadership – though in deference to his position and in accordance with acceptable norms we remain considerate and polite in our approach.
I find the Prime Minister’s comment about me in his press conference yesterday to be reckless and irresponsible in light of the disastrous outcome of last Friday’s ISA raids.
He has conflated what is essentially an issue of democracy, freedom and the rule of law with national security. The use of the ISA to harass and detain duly elected political opponents is a grave transgression of the law and its continued use would further erode confidence in the current government and exacerbate political instability.
As the incumbent Prime Minister actively holding office and exercising all Executive powers, and as the outgoing Finance Minister, we hold him fully accountable for the current political turmoil and mismanagement of the nation’s economy. His accusation that I have had an adverse impact on the nation’s economy is entirely without basis.
I have met with the key fund managers in the region, representing over USD 1 trillion in assets, and on multiple occasions they were unanimously in support of comprehensive reforms in Malaysia including judicial independence, a free media, a more professional police force and anti-corruption agency, investor friendly laws and assurances on the non-interference of politicians in the governance of Bank Negara. These are policies Pakatan Rakyat has promised to implement– and initiatives that the current administration has done virtually nothing to advance since March 8th.
Leader of Opposition
De-facto leader, Keadilan
Another blogger, Raja Petra Kamaruddin, was detained last week. An opposition blogger has been arrested for allegedly displaying a national flag upside down on his website, as the government comes under more pressure.
Syed Azidi Syed Aziz, better known as Kickdefella, is the second blogger to be arrested in a week.
The Malaysian opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, is demanding a vote of no confidence in the government.
Mr Anwar says he now has the support of enough MPs to bring down Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi.
Mr Syed Aziz, picked up late on Wednesday, is being held under the Sedition Act.
He is known as a supporter of the conservative Islamic PAS party, a component in the coalition seeking to topple the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi.
Mr Syed Aziz’s website had recently advocated that people fly the Malaysian flag upside down as a protest against the current political upheaval.
Mr Abdullah reportedly called the protest “a malicious act” and police were told to investigate the campaign.
“We were informed that the police were looking for us on Tuesday and waited for them but they didn’t show up,” his Mr Sayed Aziz’s wife Bariah Ishak told the Star daily newspaper.
“We thought the worst was over but they came looking for him and so he surrendered,” she added.
Posted in Arrest, Censorship, Harassment, Police, Politics
Tagged Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Anwar Ibrahim, Kickdefella, PAS, Police, Raja Petra Kamaruddin, Sayed Aziz, Sedition Act
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the press after attending his sodomy case hearing in the Sessions Court in Kuala Lumpur Wednesday.
KUALA LUMPUR: The prosecution wants to transfer Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy case from the Sessions Court where he was charged last month to the High Court.
But the defence objected to the move saying it was unnecessary and that the transfer certificate had been signed by Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail, who was to have no involvement in the case.
Lead counsel Sulaiman Abdullah complained about the shabby treatment by the prosecution, who only informed the defence about the transfer application at the eleventh hour.
“We asked them what was the plan and up to Tuesday, we were told that there was no decision.
“On Tuesday afternoon, senior DPP (and AG’s Chambers head of prosecution) Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden was kind enough to call me to say that they most probably would ask for a transfer.
“Only 10 minutes ago when DPP Mohd Yusof appeared in court were we informed that they were indeed going to ask for a transfer,” the veteran lawyer said.
Describing the move as an “ambush”, Sulaiman said it left the defence to argue “practically out of the air.” [more]
KUALA LUMPUR – The doctor who examined Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan after the latter had lodged a police report alleging he had been sodomised by Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has resurfaced to “set the record straight.”
Pusrawi Hospital’s Dr Mohamed Osman Abdul Hamid, reaffirmed statements he had made in a statutory declaration he had filed on June 28, saying that he had found no evidence of sodomy in his examination.
“I am standing by the SD that I have made. There have been a lot of media statements that have put me in a bad light both professionally and personally.
“Please be assured that I had merely done my job as a doctor. I am not involved in politics and I will always tell the truth,” Dr Mohamed Osman said at a press conference Thursday. He was accompanied by his lawyers M. Puravalen and Yusri Kamarudin at the Bar Council in Leboh Pasar Besar here.
His statutory declaration was leaked to Malaysia Today and published in the news portal on July 28, after which the Myanmar national took one month’s leave from the hospital and apparently fled the country.
The doctor said he has no knowledge of how his medical examination report on Mohd Saiful, who has alleged that he was sodomised by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, was circulated to the media and Internet.
“I don’t know how the information got out and I don’t know Mohd Saiful in a personal capacity.’ [more]
IPSnews, by Baradan Kuppusamy
PERMATANG PAUH, Penang, Aug 22 (IPS) – Sleaze and race are dominating the by-election for this constituency where opposition leader and self-proclaimed prime minister-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim is fighting to return to parliament after a decade-long absence.
Anwar tells voters that if he elected he will be just one step away from toppling the government and replacing it with a new one that is free of racial discrimination and corruption. He proposes to do that by inducing defections from the ranks of the ruling Barisan Nasional (National Front coalition) or BN.
In response to Anwar’s challenge, the ruling coalition has unleashed money, patronage and the overwhelming control it has over mainstream media to convince the 58,000 voters in this constituency that Ibrahim is simply unfit to be anything, let alone the next prime minister.
Their main weapons in this campaign are sleaze and the manipulation of racial fears to influence the voters, 70 percent of whom are Muslim-Malays.
One matter persistently used in the campaign is the charge filed against Ibrahim on Jul. 26 that he sodomised a former aide, Saiful Bukhari Azlan. The trial starts on Sep. 13. [more]
Posted in Arrest, Barisan Nasional, Elections, Ethics, Politics, UMNO, vote rigging
Tagged Anwar Ibrahim, Barisan Nasional, Malays, Permatang Pauh, Race, Saiful Bukhari Azlan, Sleaze, UMNO
International Herald Tribune
The Associated Press
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia: Malaysia’s anti-corruption watchdog arrested two state lawmakers from opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s party for alleged bribery Wednesday, complicating Anwar’s bid to re-enter Parliament.
Opposition groups voiced concerns that the arrests were meant to undermine public support for Anwar ahead of next week’s parliamentary by-election. Anwar has persistently accused Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s administration of rampant corruption and has pledged to seize power by mid-September.
The government’s Anti-Corruption Agency said it detained two legislators and four other suspects in northern Perak state for alleged crimes in connection to a 180 million ringgit (US$56 million) housing project and a sex case.
One of the legislators was “caught shortly after receiving a bribe of over 123,400 ringgit (US$38,500) to speed up the processing of a housing project,” the agency said in a statement. It did not elaborate on the alleged sex case.
An agency official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make public statements, said the legislators were from Anwar’s People’s Justice Party, but he denied the crackdown was politically motivated.
The arrests could be a potential embarrassment for Anwar, who is already fighting a sodomy charge that he claims was concocted by the government to tarnish his reputation. The government has denied the allegations. [more]
Posted in ACA, Arrest, corruption, Elections, Ethics, Pakatan Rakyat, Politics
Tagged Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Anti-Corruption Agency, Anwar Ibrahim, By-Election, corruption, Parti Keadilan Rakyat
By ZULKIFLY MOHAMAD, thestar.com.my
BUTTERWORTH: Pakatan Rakyat de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim need not swear in the name of Allah as the Syariah Court is the best place for him to prove his innocence.
The Penang branch of the National Ulama Association’s chairman Dr Wan Salim Wan Mohd Nor said the basic principles of Islamic law should be followed by producing four witnesses to testify in Anwar’s sodomy allegations.
“If the accuser fails to bring four witnesses as required by the hudud law, then the case should be dropped,” he told a press conference Tuesday at the Sunway Business Centre in Seberang Jaya, here.
Dr Wan Salim said if under certain circumstances the four witnesses could not be produced in the Syariah Court, the prosecutor could use DNA evidence to prove the case but such evidence was not solid.