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2nd Panel Meeting

Panel to meet Nov 9 deadline

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 29, 2007): The three-man panel investigating the authenticity of a video clip purportedly containing a telephone conversation involving judicial appointments between a senior lawyer and a “Datuk” met for almost five hours at its second meeting today, and reported that no witnesses have approached it.

With the Nov 9 deadline for it to submit a report fast coming up, panel head Tan Sri Haidar Mohd Noor told reporters today there is still time for witnesses to come forward.

“We will see how it goes. Time (is) already short and we have a time frame to work on,” he said.

The former chief judge of Malaya said no one has approached the panel’s secretariat – the Prime Minister’s Office’s legal division – to give evidence on the recording’s authenticity despite the assurance from the premier himself that witnesses will be given protection.

The panel – also comprising former court of appeal judge Datuk Mahadev Shankar and National Service Training Council chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye was also accompanied by secretariat head and PM’s Office legal division director-general Datuk Abdullah Sani Ab Hamid.

It met with Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan at its second meeting, held at the Malaysian Human Rights Commission (Suhakam).

ACA deputy director-general of operations Datuk Abu Kassim Mohamed, who arrived with Gani and Musa at 11.25am, stayed for the rest of the meeting with his team of investigating officers.

Gani and Musa left almost an hour later.

Special Tasks Unit head Sazali Salbi, who heads the ACA investigation team, and two digital forensic experts from CyberSecurity Malaysia (formerly known as National ICT Security and Emergency Response Centre) including digital forensics head Asmawi Fadillah Mohd Ariffin were present to adduce evidence.

However, Haidar did not reveal the panel’s findings, saying they have to report to the government first.

“I will see to it that it (the report) should be ready by the time set by the government,” he said.

On strict conditions laid down by Mahadev, three members from the steering committee for the Coalition of Free the Judiciary – namely Lateefah Koya, Eric Paulson and Tian Chua – were allowed only 10 minutes during the proceedings to present the panel with their second memorandum and raise their objections to the panel’s appointment.

The Coalition again called for the establishment of a Royal Commission to look into the matter, especially into corruption within the judiciary, and again questioned Haidar’s interests as the chairman of the panel as he ruled in favour of Datuk V.K. Lingam – the lawyer said to be in the clip – in a defamation case previously.

Haidar, in replying to questions about their allegations said: “Have they all read the judgment? To me my conscience is clear. I was not under any influence.”

In Petaling Jaya, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said the government will decide the fate of the three-man panel after it receives the report from the panel.

– quoted from an article published in The Sun on 29th October 2007 (link)

Sometimes I wonder what goes on in these meetings. Five hours just talking about the video clip? Also, what kind of digital forensic experts do we have if they cannot even confirm whether the man on the tape is VK Lingam or not? Even the Hong Kong outfit they outsourced their work to couldn’t do it.

I’m curious about the strict conditions under which the steering committee where allowed to address the Panel.

Strict Conditions

Also, what did Najib mean by ‘the fate of the three-man panel’? Sounds open to hilarious misinterpretation :

Fate of the Panel

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Written by ak57

November 9, 2007 at 10:59 pm

Posted in AK57 Comics, Local News

Tagged with ,

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