Wednesday, March 12, 2014

After Anwar and Karpal, who’s next?

By P Ramakrishnan
Free Malaysia Today 
March 12, 2014
There seems to be a trend now to get rid of Pakatan leaders through the court process so that Umno can remain in power.

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Malaysian courts have brought infamy to the justice system. The way justice has been dished out is nothing short of disgraceful and dishonourable.

What Karpal Singh did following the undemocratic overthrow of the duly elected Perak Pakatan Rakyat government was to express an opinion based on the Federal Constitution. The provision in the constitution provided for this opinion to be expressed.

At no time did Karpal Singh question His Royal Highness, the Sultan of Perak. At no time was Karpal offensive in expressing this opinion. No insult was meant.

The Sultan’s authority was not challenged. Karpal was not disrespectful to the royal personage.

The prevailing situation then needed a professional legal opinion on what had transpired. And Karpal Singh merely gave his professional legal opinion honestly, without fear or favour.

This is expected of an elected member of parliament and an experienced lawyer. Karpal was discharging his duty and responsibility by commenting on a matter of public interest.

It is a great national tragedy that the court is unable to differentiate an honest opinion from crass and gross verbal onslaught crudely expressed without any respect to the royal personage.

In Karpal Singh’s case, this is clearly a travesty of justice which is most unfair and undeserved.
We are told that the court had taken into consideration Karpal Singh’s health in not imposing a jail sentence, but that means nothing.

When Anwar Ibrahim’s lawyer pleaded for time to submit a report on his health before sentence was passed, it was summarily dismissed as of no consequence. The court was in a hurry to dispose of him.

The court must have been mindful of the fact that a jail sentence for Karpal Singh would have outraged the nation and there would have been an international outcry against this. So the court imposed a fine.

But the fact is, if the whole case against Karpal Singh was meant to knock him out as a member of parliament, that objective was achieved by this RM4,000 fine, which could disqualify him in the event he fails in his appeal.

There seems to be a trend now to get rid of Pakatan Rakyat leaders through the court process so that Umno can remain in power.

Who’s next?
Anwar was put away on Friday; it was Karpal’s turn on Tuesday. Who else next?

In the pending cases involving Pakatan leaders, this would be the outcome. One by one, the Pakatan leaders will be disabled and dispatched off through the predictably subservient judiciary.

The majority of Malaysians roundly condemn this atrocious targeting of opposition leaders. They will show their anger and displeasure when they hold the ballot papers in their hands. There is no doubt about it.

They understand the truth in the saying, “If the society today allows wrongs to go unchallenged, the impression is created that those wrongs have the approval of the majority.”

When will Umno understand that the majority of Malaysians don’t condone these wrongs and don’t approve of their modus operandi?

Don’t they see this is contrary to all democratic principles which Malaysians aspire to nowadays?

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