1st October, 2007
JOHOR BAHARU: Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad said Bar Council Malaysia should avoid being used as tool by certain parties in the video tape issue showing a popular lawyer on the phone allegedly talking to a senior judge over the appointment of a judge.
The Member of Parliament for Johor Baharu hoped that the march by 2,000 Bar Council members at Putrajaya on Wednesday over the video tape would not spread to other things.
“We hope that the Bar Council will not become a tool to certain parties as the video tape is being investigated by the government,” he told reporters after presenting welfare aid to the poor, orphans, disabled and single parents of the Semberong parliamentary constituency here yesterday.
He said the Bar Council should not become overly sensitive over matters which have yet to be verified and that the independent committee appointed should be allowed to investigate the authenticity of the video tape.
The Deputy Prime Minister recently announced the setting up of an independent committee chaired by former Chief Judge of Malaya Tan Sri Haidar Mohd Noor with National Service Council chairman and social activist Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye and former Court of Appeal judge Datuk Mahadev Shankar as members.
The panel’s job is to investigate the authenticity of the video tape.
Shahrir said the authenticity of the video tape should be proven first because the tape recording is five year-old and that its contents had been edited.
He also questioned action by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim over the video issue and asked why he did not do the same when former Lord President Tun Salleh Abbas was sacked during the constitutional crisis in 1988.
The video issue and march by Bar Council members had pressured the judiciary and proof that the people hold the judiciary in high regard.
Shahrir said it was a normal process as the people wanted to see the judiciary strengthened.
He had earlier received RM20,000 “zakat” money from Bank Rakyat, RM10,000 from Gerbang Perdana Sdn Bhd and distributed Ramadan goodies to orphans, single parents and the disabled from the Johor Baharu parliamentary constituency.
THE MARCH OF THE BAR COUNCIL