Monday, July 14, 2008

Investigation Of High Profile Cases by Subordinate Officers?

Everything seems wrong in this country and in recent weeks there has been too much suspense caused by allegation of sodomy against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim by Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan. There were also allegations by Anwar against the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail and also the IGP, Tan Sri Musa Hassan for abusing the power of their office into a sodomy case against Anwar some ten years ago. There was also a statutory declaration made by a private investigator, P. Subramaniam linking the DPM Datuk Najib with the murdered Altantuya. The story was carried in national tabloids (New Straits Times Friday July 4, 2008) that Altantuya was said to have told P. Subramaniam that “she had met Razak and Najib at a dinner in Paris and that she was promised a sum of US$500,000 as commission for assisting in a submarine deal in Paris.”

In the midst all these high dramas, Najib said Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan confided in him being sodomized by Anwar Ibrahim just days before Saiful lodged the explosive police report to against Anwar. Najib claimed that Saiful came to his house, looked traumatized and was in fear with cold hands, but, needed help to obtain a government scholarship and had to see me. Najib said about the allegation against him, “Why Now?”, then Anwar could also ask the same question, “Why Now?” and was it something to do with the impending announcement by Anwar to contest in a by-election and that “Why Now?” an allegation of sodomy came out? Was it because BN was so scared of Anwar’s win would create havoc in Parliament?

Now, the whole world would be watching us again and the authorities had announced that the allegations by Anwar to be investigated by the Anti-Corruption Agency. We should not forget that the allegation by Anwar involved most top officers of two important arms of enforcement agencies, that is, the Attorney-General’s Office and the Police Department. There could not be good reason for ACA be instructed to conduct the investigation as the allegations by Anwar could involve serious implications on the credibility of the said two government agencies. This would only bring down public confidence against the Attorney-General’s Office and the Police Department. There could be offences that the ACA could not have to power to investigate, such as obstruction to justice or fabrication of evidence.

The fact that a senior officer from the Attorney-General was said has been seconded to the ACA to handle such a high profile case does not guarantee the Malaysian public and the world that the ACA could act transparently in their investigations and without any undue pressure or influence. Could ACA work independently when the officer from the Attorney-General Chambers was a subordinate officer to the Attorney-General? At the as same time, he is also not an officer higher in rank to the IGP. In all such investigations, officers who conducted investigations should by right, be the officer senior in rank to the officer being investigated and when investigation is in progress the “suspect” officers need to go on leave or be suspended. The government should not let Datuk Shukri Abdul who only holds a director rank in the ACA to conduct the investigation as being a director, Datuk Shukri Abdul is in the same rank of any director in the Police Department or a director in the Attorney-General Chambers. This is also not fair to Datuk Shukri and he may feel some uneasiness to carryout an investigation against these officers who were superior in rank than him.

Since the allegations by Anwar involved two most top officers of two most important government agencies in the administration of justice, there is no reason why the government had not set up a Royal Commission of Inquiry to conduct the investigation, instead of having the same being handled by the ACA. This at the same time is not fair to Tan Sri Rahim Noor, who when being the top cop of the Royal Malaysia Police was investigated by a Royal Commission for the black eye assault against Anwar Ibrahim, It is also not fair to Anwar too when a Royal Commission was set up against Tan Sri Rahim and not in the present case of allegations made by him against Tan Sri Abdul Gani and Tan Sri Musa Hassan. At the time Anwar was assaulted for the black eye, Anwar was already no more in power and it was also the same situation now. Why double-standard?

It is a known procedure that ACA also has to report their high profile cases to the Prime Minister or to the Minister in-charge of legal affairs, not to Parliament. Again, this is not fair to ACA who later if could compile sufficient evidence, but, will be administratively told to hold on with the investigation or not to proceed with the case further, thus, would cause the dirt be swept under the carpet, if proved.

Again, the power to prosecute lies with the Attorney-General and it would be unlikely that the Attorney-General would like himself be prosecuted if there could be evidence against him. This is because under Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution the discretionary power to institute, conduct and prosecute a case lies with the Attorney-General himself.

The investigation at the same time also could not be fair to both Tan Sri Abdul Gani and Tan Sri Musa Hassan as in how and in whatever way the investigation be conducted, although if they may come out innocent, their names still could be tainted by public perception against them in which they will carry into their retirement. This is because the public perception or opinion is against investigation be carried out by government officers lower in rank to them or by a government agency with equivalent status to their departments.

Malaysians should also recall the case of Tun Salleh Abas and the Justices being preside by a Judge lower in rank to Tun Salleh Abas which caused much public dissatisfaction. The wounds until now are not fully healed. If the Attorney-General be prosecuted, it would also be very awkward for him be prosecuted by an officer lower in rank to him. This therefore calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to be set up to investigate the allegations against both Tan Sri Abdul Gani and Tan Sri Musa Hassan.

On the same length, there is also a need for a Royal Commission to be set to investigate the case against DPM Najib for allegations of links he purportedly had with Altantuya.

The answer given by Najib to the press of the meeting he had with Saiful was also clouded with mystery and had damaged his image as the anointed prime minister in- waiting. It does not talk sense for a young Saiful to be able to see many VIPs including cabinet ministers and the DPM so easily, especially, when such a meeting could be in the house of the DPM and that Saiful could confide in DPM the sodomy before lodging a police report against Anwar. The person most close to Saiful could be his fiancée or his parents and family members. Why Saiful had to see and confide in Najib, but, not his fiancée and his family members?

Since Najib knew the matter and had observed that Saiful looked traumatized, looked genuine and in fear with cold hands, why Najib, being a DPM and a leader that was expected to uphold law and order did not immediately sent or advised Saiful to lodge a police report against Anwar immediately? Najib may not have the legal obligation, but, at least a moral obligation to see that a report be lodged against Anwar immediately and not sit on it.

A leader who leads the country must know when to take action and must have the courage to make a decision. Malaysians should not forget Senator Edward Kennedy could not gain American confidence in his presidential election just because Senator Edward Kennedy took many hours to come forward to the police station to lodge a police report concerning the death of his female aide who was involved in an accident. So how could Malaysians have confidence with Najib to hold the post of the Prime Minister if he could not make a decision sharp and quick decision affecting law and order? Is Najib still fit to be the DPM?

Why it took so many days before the police report was lodged against Anwar?

If Saiful wants a scholarship, why he had to see the DPM? There are many poor bright students out there who also needed scholarships, but, they could not sought help from DPM, but, why Saiful could easily see the DPM for help? It seems that as if Malaysians are fools all the time! We all know if it was not easy for us even to see some government officers, then, how could Saiful been able to see a DPM so easily? What special relationship Saiful had with DPM and may Saiful teach a tip or two to Malaysians how to do this. It is something of a pride if we can even shake hand with the DPM!

Najib please wake up to international standard as Malaysia’s future will depend on you! It seems that your Zaid Ibrahim at this moment is more bold than you!

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