Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Will Anwar Be Jailed?

The Malaysian judiciary's reputation took a severe beating following its emasculation after a rather farcical process that removed the then Lord President and two Supreme Court judges in 1988.

It has not recovered since.

Except for some judges, notably Court of Appeal judge Mohd Hishamuddin Mohd Yunus who remains inspirational, and some others most thinking Bolehlanders have lost faith in the nation's judiciary.

It is a damning indictment of the Mahathir regime's rather singular and successful assays to cow state and public institutions.

So much so that today, Bolehlanders generally see these institutions, rightly or wrongly, as largely partial and dysfunctional.

Now that Anwar is awaiting the outcome of his final Federal Court appeal against his conviction for sodomy, many of us Bolehlanders are wondering if the outcome will be a political or judicial one.

If you consider the submissions from both sides, you would have to lean more toward the one that says there is no nail to hammer in the coffin or go fly kite.

Unfortunately, one can't be too sure. especially given the controversial appointment of a lawyer as the prosecutor in the case and one that is perceived as the Pm's own private lawyer.

The question most of us are asking is whether the AG's Chambers was so bereft of capable DPPs as to need the service of a lawyer from outside the Chambers? After all, it was not as if the case called for specialist expertise lacking in the AG's Chambers.

And especially given the unusual gusto, confidence and inexplicable eagerness of the prosecutor to nail the case, who had even boasted that all he needed was just ten minutes to call it a day.

Well, in the end, he needed more like an hour in all? And still asked for more time to further submit on the difference between consent and submission in a sexual offence case, when Anwar's lawyers had wrapped up theirs.

As a hot shot legal eagle and a specially appointed prosecutor in the case, he should have had the foresight and most importantly, the skill, to have had anticipated what he needed to submit on and not had hoped for a second bite at the cherry.

Whether Anwar is acquitted or jailed, the losers won't be the opposition or the rakyat.

The real losers will be the dUMNo led administration.

If Anwar is jailed, more people will turn their backs on the dUMNo led government.

If Anwar is acquitted, the fight for change goes on with him at the helm.

Even if Anwar is incarcerated, the fight for change will still go on without him.

The only doubt whether come the next general election, the opposition pact will gain Putrajaya is the continued presence of the increasingly intractable Pas in Pakatan.

Anwar will have to deal with this.

My personal view is that with Pas still around as a coalition partner, Pakatan might just lose the last leg to Putrajaya.

It is better to let Pas go.


Rather than later.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Political Asylum, University Students And An Administration Scared Of Its Own Shadows

If you asked the average Bolehlander about political asylum, he would likely shake his head and stare at you like you were not up there in the head.

That is how rarely, if ever at all, that we hear of Malaysians seeking asylum.

However, in the space of a month or two we have already heard of not one, but two Malaysians, and young ones at that, doing just that.

The latest seeking asylum in Sweden had alleged that he was being treated like rubbish by the rulers and the dUMNO led government, threatened with death by gangsters and the Malay right wingers, and even harassed by the authorities,

This recent asylum phenomenon tells you of an increasingly intolerant administration running scared even of its own shadows. Maybe this is not surprising after all - realising that, for the first time ever since, they have lost the moral legitimacy to rule on a minority vote, Ah Jib's administration may be resorting to rough hand tactics to scare and cow the rakyat into submission.

By going on a recent sedition blitz, arresting not only politicians but also law professors, lawyers and laymen for speaking up, Ah Jib's administration is showing that it is intolerant and afraid of criticisms and discourse.

The more you try to suppress public discourse and opinion, the more you risk antagonising the people. There is only so much you could do, especially in this cyber age, to suppress public opinion and discourse before you realise that you have gone too far.

Is that why we are beginning to see even our otherwise malleable and timid university students willing to risk their academic future and the prospect of arrests to speak up in defence of the people's right to freedom of speech and expression?

We must say bravo to the University Malaya students who had invited Anwar to speak at their campus despite attempts by the university authorities to frustrate it and take the organisers to account.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Are We Pendatang, Travellers, Explorers, Settlers, Malaysians Or What?

Malaysian politics is such that now and then, hangers-on, rent seekers, their masters and agents have been trying to score points by painting others as pendatang to stay relevant and in the public eye.

This has caused much bad blood until someone pointed out that, except for the native orang asli and pribumi of Sabah and Sarawak, we are all immigrants.

This got one smart alec to avert that Malays are not in fact pendatang but travellers who settled here.

Not to be outdone, an internet news portal reader retorted that if that was the case, then the Chinese who followed Zheng Ho the great explorer to, and settled in, Bolehland are neither in fact pendatang but explorers.

Now that leaves me wondering where the Indians stand.

I am not an Indian, but I have read that there is some archaeological evidence that there was an early Indian settlement in Kedah. If true, this would make the Indians early settlers.

So, if we are all travellers, explorers and settlers but not pendatang, are we not Malaysians?

Whether we are pendatang or not, we are all Malaysians.

All this pendatang toing and froing is just asinine, divisive, inimical, destructive and not profitable to national cohesiveness and needs to stop.

Unfortunately, we look like not going to see the end of it anytime soon,

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