Friday, June 06, 2008

Speak Up or Forever Hold Your Peace, Tun Salleh

Reveal us the first letter to Agong


Yesterday' The Star reported Zaid Ibrahim making rounds to visit the sacked judges and recepient of ex-gratia payments. He got himself into an accident and his official car is in bad shape. To many of us, such an accident would alert us for a possible divine reminder. Will Zaid realised it?

He could be in the wrong in doing his so-called attempt to bring judicial reform. His end is not justified by the means. The ex-gratia is a political showcase that serves nothing toward the road to reform.

It is easily contrued as a corrupt act given the fact that all these judges were provided due pension and gratuities and there is no legitimate basis for it. Is Zaid, who had to face a disciplinary party membership suspension for money politics during his attempt for Vice President nominationwas in 2004, in the habit of repeating his corrupt act?

Or he is disillusioned to think it is a philantropic act? Zaid has been rated as one of the top five largest philantrophy in Asia.

Since Salleh Abas made a response on Rocky Bru's on May 25th, 2008 to Matthias challenge posted on Biggum Dogmann's blog on May 19th, nothing is heard from Tun Salleh.

Matthias had immediately replied to Tun Salleh's response on the day itself. Even Dr Mahathir has gave an elaborate posting entitled Tun Salleh Abas Saga today, June 6th, 2008 below:

1. When the Government gave ex-gratia payments to the judges involved in the Tun Salleh Abas removal as the Lord President of Malaysian courts, the question that needs to be answered is whether it is because of Government regrets over something that happened not during the period this Government was in power or is it because of a desperate attempt to win support after the disastrous results of the election of 2008.

2. Had the present Government felt regret, it should have paid ex-gratia payment (for want of a better term) upon achieving power. But obviously it only felt regret lately, after its brand new de facto Minister of Law, who incidentally was suspended for money politics, suggested the move in order to win the approval of the Bar Council.

3. But what was at the back of this political feeling of guilt by this Government. Was it because of the injustice done? Or was something unfair and unlawful committed by the previous Government.

4. Most people know about Tun Salleh’s dismissal but few care to find out what really happened. Some believe that the action against Tun Salleh was because he had proposed a panel of 12 judges to hear the appeal against Judge Harun Hashim’s findings that UMNO was an illegal organisation. Others believe it was because he was biased against UMNO in his judgements.

5. None of these is true. Tun Salleh had not been biased against the Government. He dismissed the application by Lim Kit Siang in the case involving UEM and the Government, for an interim injunction made by a lower court in a lengthy judgement made by him as President of the Supreme Court. In numerous other cases his judgement favoured the Government. As to the panel to hear the appeal against Judge Harun Hashim’s findings, a bigger panel could actually be good for UMNO, which wanted nothing more than the validation of the election results making me President and Ghafar Baba Deputy President. Whether the panel rejects or approves Judge Harun’s decision, UMNO and UMNO Baru would not be affected.

6. The truth is that the case against Tun Salleh was triggered by his letters to the Yang di Pertuan Agong which were considered by the Agong as being highly improper and insulting to him.

7. In his first letter Tun Salleh had written to DYMM YDP Agong complaining about the noise made during some repair work at the Agong’s palace near Salleh’s house.

8. This alone can be considered as very improper. A man as senior as he was could have asked to see the Agong and verbally informed him about the noise.

9. But to compound the act of les majesté he sent copies of his letter to the other rulers. This implied that he did not have faith in the Agong and wanted the other Rulers to apply pressure on him.

10. This was followed by another letter to DYMM YDP Agong complaining about the behaviour of the executive i.e. the Prime Minister. Copies of this letter were also sent to the other Rulers.

11. In this letter Tun Salleh said inter alia, “All of us (the judges) are disappointed with the various comments and accusations made by the Prime Minister against the judiciary not only outside but inside Parliament.”

12. He went on to say in his letter “the accusations and comments have brought shame to all of us and left us mentally disturbed to the extent of being unable to discharge our functions orderly and properly.”

13. He asserted that he and all the judges “do not like to reply to the accusations publicly because such action is not compatible with our position as judges under the Constitution …. And as such it is only proper for us to be patient in the interest of the nation.”

14. This statement was obviously untrue as before the letter was sent, in a speech at the University of Malaya when he was receiving his honorary doctorate, he complained about “the judiciary being placed in the social service category” inferring that this was not in keeping with “the rule of law” and that the “priority of the courts should be altered so that freedom is guaranteed and work is not disturbed.”

15. He went on to say “the officers of the public service (i.e. judges) do not have a lesser role and function to play then the roles played by the politicians.”

16. Further he said, “This matter becomes aggravated if the rights involved in a decision made by an official are related to judicial matters because this will result in a very important question that is interference with the independence of the judiciary.”

17. Again when making a speech at the launching of a book “Law, Justice and the Judiciary, Transnational Trends” Tun Salleh had said, among other things, “The vital constitutional principle is so settled that no question should really arise concerning the position of the judiciary under the Constitution. But recently this guardianship has been made an issue and our independence appears to be under some kind of threat.” He added, “This is amply borne out by some of the comments made recently which embarrassed the judiciary a great deal. These remarks not only question our neutrality and independence but the very value of it as an institution ….. Our responsibility of deciding the case without fear or favour …. does not mean that the court decision should be in favour of the Government all the time…….”

18. “Apart from this,” he continued, “the problem of maintaining judicial independence is further complicated by the fact that the judiciary is the weakest of all the three branches of the Government.”

19. “What matters most in order to enable us to save the system from disastrous consequences is that we judges must act with responsibility and dignity and not be drawn or tempted into an impulsive action which could only result in aggravating the situation.”

20. These two speeches were delivered on 1st August 1987 and 12th January 1988 respectively. But Tun Salleh’s letter to the King was dated 26th March 1988. As I pointed out earlier it is not true that he did not speak about his accusations against the Government in public because he maintains that “such action is not compatible with our position as judges under the Constitution” and that “it is only proper for us to be patient in the interest of the nation.”

21. All his statements in these two speeches clearly contain his criticisms of the Prime Minister and the Government long before he wrote his letter to the King.

22. Another point raised in his letter to the Agong is that “the accusations and comments have brought shame to all of us (judges) and left us mentally disturbed to the extent of being unable to discharge our functions orderly and properly.”

23. In Section 125 of the Federal Constitution, under clause (3) the grounds for removing a judge, apart from misbehaviour include infirmity of body or mind or any other cause, properly to discharge the functions of his office.”

24. By his own admission Tun Salleh was not able “to discharge his functions orderly and properly.” He was therefore unfit to continue to be a judge.

25. Section 125, Clause 4 provides for “the Yang di Pertuan Agong to appoint a Tribunal …. and refer the representations to it, and may on the recommendation of the tribunal remove the judge from office.”

26. The two letters from Tun Salleh were regarded by the Agong as being highly improper and insulting particularly the copies sent to the other Rulers.

27. During one of my weekly meetings with the Agong, DYMM expressed his annoyance over the letters and simply requested that I dismiss Tun Salleh Abas from being the Lord President of the Malaysian Courts. He writes in his own handwriting his request on the margin of Tun Salleh’s first letter, regarding the noise made by the work on the Agong’s residence.

28. To the Agong it was a simple matter. He had appointed the Lord President and therefore he was entitled to remove him. I thought it was best for me to inform Cabinet and seek the advice of the Attorney-General.

29. I must admit that Tun Salleh’s complaints against me in his letter annoyed me. It is true that I had criticised the judges for interpreting the laws passed by Government not in accordance with the intention or objective of the laws. I did suggest that if the laws were interpreted differently from what the Government and the legislators intended, then we would amend the laws. During a cabinet meeting I had in jest quoted Shakespeare’s words, “The first thing we do we hang the lawyers.” Only a nitwit would think that I meant what I said literally. But apparently lawyers and judges took umbrage over what I said and regarded me as their enemy (about to hang them, I suppose).

30. I also criticised judges for making laws themselves through their interpretations and subsequently citing these as their authority. I believed that the separation of powers meant the Legislators make laws and the judiciary apply them. Of course if the laws made by the legislators breach the provisions of the constitution, the supreme law of the land, then judges can reject them.

31. Again some judges simply refused to hear cases involving the death penalty, pushing these unfairly on to other judges.

32. It is the view of most jurists that “It is not wrong for any member of the public or the administration to criticise the judiciary. “Justice is not a cloistered virtue.” (Peter Aldridge Williams QC).

33. The above writer quoted McKenna J “There is no difference between the judge and the Common Man except that one administers the law and the other endures it.”

34. Yet Tun Salleh took the view that I was subverting the independence of the judiciary when I expressed views on how judges frustrated the objectives of the legislators.

35. Through the grapevine I heard of the judges’ displeasure with me. But I did not take any action, certainly not to remove Tun Salleh. I only acted after the Agong complained about the two letters.

36. The Cabinet agreed that we must adhere strictly to the provisions of the Constitution. I therefore advised the Agong that Tun Salleh could not be removed unless the Agong appoints a Tribunal to hear the complaints against him and make recommendations to the Agong.

37. Upon the Agong agreeing, the Government selected six judges and former judges for His Majesty to consider. The members included foreign judges in the person of the Honourable the Justice K.A.P. Ranasinghe, Chief Justice Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Honourable Mr Justice T.S. Sinnathuray, Senior Judge of the Supreme Court of Singapore.

38. The Chairman was the Chief Judge (Malaya), Tan Sri Dato Abdul Hamid bin Hj Omar. The other members were Dato Sri Lee Hun Hoe, Chief Justice (Borneo), Tan Sri Abdul Aziz bin Zain, Retired Judge and Tan Sri Mohd Zahir bin Ismail, Retired Judge.

39. The inclusion of foreign judges was to make sure the Tribunal would not be biased.

40. It is unfortunate that Tun Salleh Abas refused to appear before the Tribunal. Instead he depended on his colleagues to try to prevent the findings of the Tribunal from reaching the Yang di Pertuan Agong.

41. What the five judges who were sympathetic to him did was certainly not in keeping with Tun Salleh’s expressed views in his talk during the launching of the book “Law, Justice and the Judiciary. Transnational Trend, “when he said “we as judges must act with responsibility and dignity and not be drawn or tempted into any impulsive action which could only result in aggravating the situation.”

42. The five judges had ignored rules and procedures and the requirement to get the approval of the (Acting) Lord President, as well as wait for the findings by Mr Justice Ajaib Singh on the same matter. Instead they cancelled courts sittings in Kota Bahru which were scheduled for the judges, and held a sitting of the Supreme Court in Kuala Lumpur to hear an application by Tun Salleh Abbas for prohibition proceedings to determine his position.

43. The Supreme Court of five judges with Tan Sri Wan Sulaiman presiding heard an ex parte oral application by Tun Salleh’s lawyer, retired for a few minutes, returned and unanimously made an order for stay restraining the Tribunal from submitting any recommendations, report or advice respecting the enquiry to His Majesty the Yang di Pertuan Agong until further order.

44. Subsequently the Acting Lord President, set up a Supreme Court of five judges which negated the decision of the Wan Suleiman Court.

45. I would like to repeat that despite public criticisms made against me by Tun Salleh, I did not take any action against him. I only did so after he insulted the Agong and the Agong requested me to have him removed. Of course some would still say I influenced the Agong. But throughout my 22 years I had never involved the rulers in politics or my personal problems. The records are there for all to see.

46. I was very concerned over the forcible removal of Tun Salleh. And so I tried to get Tun Salleh to resign on his own so as to avoid a scandal. He agreed at first but he withdrew the following day.

47. I then went about getting the Tribunal approved and set up. Naturally I had to consult the Attorney-General and others who were familiar with judges. Once the Tribunal was set up my involvement ended.

48. When Tun Salleh and the other judges had their services terminated, they should not be paid their pensions. But following appeals by Attorney-General I agreed that they should be paid their full pensions. They therefore did not suffer any financial loss and their pensions were computed from the time they left.

49. These are the facts relating to the dismissal of Tun Salleh. It was he and his fellow judges who brought disrepute to the judiciary.

50. I write this to record things as they happened. I do not expect my detractors to stop saying that I destroyed the judiciary. They are my prosecutors and they are also my judges. To them I will always be the Idi Amin of Malaysia as claimed in Tun Salleh’s book “May Day for Justice”. Sadly many who so readily condemn me were judges.
Tun Salleh should come out with it or forever hold his peace.

He should not stoop himself as to be used by Abdullah Badawi's and Zaid's insidious and self serving politics. For him to accept the ex-gratia, it tantamount to accepting bribe.Such an act at the twilight of his life and struggle to redeem himself will tarnish his name permanently in the history books.

18 comments:

Loh said...

It seems that the Enuch is more concerned than the Emperor. The title of 'secretary' to TDM depreciates in value when the chance of TDM return to power dimishes.

berasiam said...

Kalau duit itu bukan haknya, bukankah haram di sisi hukum agama?

Anonymous said...

Since, the relevant parties have the letter, they can always come out with it, or file a report themselves.

TSA held his peace long enough.
He doesn't have to do jack to answer/ appease some sour-grapes who are fighting for credibilty!

A Voice said...

Loh/Anon 5:25

Lets satisfy your lust to kill the messenger. Assume the eunuch is a devil and the emperor is lucifier. Teh devil and kucifier are nourishing sour vinegar.

Back to the message and intelligent discussion please. Those are legitimate issues.

office boy said...

The chief aim Mahathir sacked Tun Salleh was to hijack the judicial power so that he could screwed the whole country upside down at his whim and fancy..

This was going on all the while during his tenure. Mahathir was ruthless and corrupted to the core.

All the proofs were clearly shown within the boundaries and outside the boundaries of Malaysia while he was in control.

Even it's a blatant white, but if Mahathir said it was black, all had to tow the line and must agreed with him, else bye bye you go.

Mahathir is the most unprecedented hated ex-pm in the history of Malaysia whereas Tun Salleh Abbas is revered as a hero for being steadfast and showed high esteem in his job as the Lord president.

This history has been scripted on scriptures.

No matter what Mahathir or his sycophant is trying to portray, it won't alter the perception of the rakyat towards his ruthless and avaricious rule of the country.

Sorry Mahathir, the rakyat's mindset is permanently set against you and this is a reversible process, period.

The epitaph of Mahathir has ofcially been written: The most corrupt ex-pm of Malaysia.

A Voice said...

Excellent English office boy.

You conclude Dr Mahathir as currupt and robbed the judicial power from judges, thus the Salleh Abas issue raised is irrelevent.

By that argument, it also means once perception has been made, publci debate and process of justice is not necessary.

Correct me if I am wrong. This sounds like mob rule and justice is delivered by perception.

Anonymous said...

How can anyone be so stupid as to believe TDM. This is not the only episode of him destroying the judiciary or the country. Remember what he did during Ops Lallang, to Lim Guan Eng for standing up for a young Malay girl who was raped by the former Chief Minister of Malacca, to DSAI and the kangaroo trial, etc. etc. etc....let's not forget. TDM is not trustworthy or honourable.

Anonymous said...

to office boy,
with that kind of thinking no wonder you're an office boy..

eddy said...

Permit me Saudara Voice;

Office Boy, I think your brains has not fully developed enough to understand and contemplate what is happening around you to make any statements derogating Tun Mahathir. From the language you posed, I am sure you were still sucking your mother's titties when Tun Mahathir was busy administering and developing the nation.

Tun Mahathir was Malaysia's Prime Minister for 22 YEARS, if he had been a tyrant or a corrupt dictator he would not have lasted 5years, as it turn out he voluntarily retired as Prime Minister and passed the baton to Abdullah.

So,Office Boy, go do some research, buy a few books on Malaysia and please do not just get information from those rabid Mahathir hating Commentators in Malaysia Today.Go get a life, boy.

office boy said...

Voice,

Your voice is vexing to ears if you don't understand the rule of law, the reasonable man test or the bystander test.

Malaysia is a screwed up country because we have leaders who don't understand law.

Ditto to you. You better shut the f**ked up like Mahathir before meshing even more up the country.

Pesanan said...

Anonymous 9:54 pm

Ops Lallang destroyed the judiciary? Didn't the law provided for it. WHy shd we allow those racist bastard DAP (who before 1957 were not citizens) to run riot in this country? Isn't UMNO members also held?

Lim Guan Eng case destroyed judiciary and country? Admirable sacraficie and determination but what can the court do when the girl held a pc to say RTC is innocent? Judicial system issue?

Anwar case a Kangaroo court? Is there not judge, prosecutors, defense lawyers and law books referred? Are we to understand that it is not a kangaroo court if Anwar was allowed to use the court for his politics by spinning yarn of conspiracy theory.

What proof to say that Dr M destroyed the judiciary?

Get your bloody fact right. Don't tell us its becasue some lower lawyers said so and the man in the street suspect so. Or LKS, Karpal, Anwar, Hadi etc think so? Thats for parrots!

sideliner said...

Ills in society take a generation to develop, say 25 years! If TDM is not responsible for all these ills, 80% would be a fair deal!

myke said...

EDDY,

"Tun Mahathir was Malaysia's Prime Minister for 22 YEARS, if he had been a tyrant or a corrupt dictator he would not have lasted 5years, as it turn out he voluntarily retired as Prime Minister and passed the baton to Abdullah."

Check your facts first and analyse them, ops lalang, judiaciary meddling is one of them, ACA meddling is also in the record (please follow sworn court statement from ACA personnel), Lingam tape is also one of them.

Need i provide further cases EDDY.??

A Voice said...

The Star Online > Nation
Thursday June 5, 2008

‘Have new tribunal to hear Salleh’s case’

KOTA BARU: The Government should convene another tribunal to hear the case of former Lord President Tun Salleh Abas’ dismissal instead of paying ex-gratia, said Kelantan Bar Committee chairman Datuk Sukri Mohamed.

He said this was because the payment would be an indirect admission of guilt without a proper trial.

Sukri said the question of an ex-gratia payment should not arise until a new tribunal is convened. “Who are these individuals in the Government to pre-judge and pre-empt the decision of the past tribunal?

“It is pronouncing guilt before due process of hearing the case. The Government becomes the judge, jury and executioner with a singular decision to award ex-gratia.”

Sukri said the best approach in handling “the scar of the constitutional crisis in 1988” was to convene a new tribunal to re-hear the case.

“If the tribunal rules that an apology is needed and approves an ex-gratia then its decision must be respected,” he said in an interview.

office boy said...

Eddy,

You are just a stupid sucker who doesn't know what is separation of powers and check and balances in a democratic country.

Mahathir replaced the independent Lord President Salleh Abbas and replaced him with a innate balls carrier cum licker and changed the judicial name to Chief Justice licking Mahathir's balls all the time.

This Eusof Chin and Ahmad Faizrus were also his eternal balls carriers and lickers. Both were hired by Mahathir to follow Mahathir's instructions.

Even an office boy like also knew this long long ago but how come you didn't know all about this?

You must be a naughty kampong boy living on trees and a katak di bawah tempurong.

This all is covered up in Malaysia but if you go to any overseas library like the US, UK, France, Australia, Canada, India, China etc. you can find political books all depicting Mahathir as the most corrupt dictatorial PM of Malaysia and binding him together with all the notorious dictators like Saddam Hussein, Narcos, Hitler, Stalin, Suharto, Idil Amin, Noriega etc.

Like this also you don't know but still want to disparage me.

I think you are wasting your father and mother's effort in producing you and wasting the natural resources of earth.

Go and join your buddies in hell lah.

Sorry, got work to do in the office, no time to waste with a useless idiot like you.

Yes boss, I am coming.....

Brunt Council said...

Tun ended his word ....

50. I write this to record things as they happened. I do not expect my detractors to stop saying that I destroyed the judiciary. They are my prosecutors and they are also my judges. To them I will always be the Idi Amin of Malaysia as claimed in Tun Salleh’s book “May Day for Justice”. Sadly many who so readily condemn me were judges.

The likes of office boy, myke, sideliner, etc fall neatly into this prosecutor and judge description. They are merely as pesanan put, parroting stuff they read and clearly lack any objectivity and independent thoughts.

The onus is on them to dispute Tun. However the tell us Tun Salleh is right because the Mat Sallehs said so. Such colonialised mind. Mat Salleh cock suckers and Minah Salleh pussy lickers!

Why shd we listen to ppl who are forever in contempt of us? People of a race that are the perpatrator to the biggest crime and injustice on humanity - colonisation!

While they tell us to read, they don't seem to read what Tun has written. The only defense these people are putting up for Tun Salleh is diversion! Even Tun Salleh is silent ...

Typical dai pai dong brains. Poisoned by hate from too much too much aji no moto.

office boy said...

brunt council,

Suharto, Saddam Hussein, Marcos are waving hands enthusiastically at Mahathir and why not Tun Salleh Abbas?

If you want concrete proof, you will be notified one of these nights to join them when you are having a deep asleep.

Anonymous said...

Dr Mahathir is a very good man . but what can he do when during his 22 years rule when he has always been surrounded by idiots! I mean he is just an 83 year old Man .Think of Dr Mahathir as the legendary cuba leader castro .Leadership is born not groomed!

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