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Empowered to Call the UnNameable

Royal commission can call anyone as witness

KANGAR: The proposed royal commission of inquiry into the “Lingam” video clip will be empowered to summon the personalities in the footage as well as those who recorded it.

Home Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Radzi Sheikh Ahmad, one of the three ministers assigned to provide legal input to the cabinet prior to the setting up of the royal commission, said it would have the power to call anyone to assist in its inquiry.

“In this case, the lawyer seen in the video clip is the primary suspect.

“Once the royal commission is established, and based on its governing enactment and instruments, it has the power to call anyone as a witness.

“If the person fails to appear (before the royal commission), he can be brought to court,” Radzi said after giving out prizes during the “Piala Datuk Seri Radzi” basketball tournament in Taman Perlis here.

He said the setting up of the royal commission would lead to a comprehensive investigation into the video clip, which allegedly shows lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam discussing judicial appointments with a senior judge in a mobile phone conversation.

Lingam had mentioned the names of several judges and ministers.

“All the witnesses involved in this case would be forced to appear.

“This way, we will get to the bottom of it,” said Radzi.

A three-member independent panel was set up in late September to determine the authenticity of the video clip.

The report it submitted to the cabinet on Friday is said to have recommended the formation of a royal commission.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had said that the establishment of the panel was deemed appropriate based on the panel’s findings.

Radzi, who is a lawyer by profession, said he and his colleagues who were studying the panel’s report were assigned to fix the terms of reference for the royal commission.

“We are not studying who should be in the panel, and we would not be panellists. We are not scrutinising it, so don’t be confused. We are observing and establishing the terms of reference.”

The other two with Radzi are Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz and Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim.

Asked who would head the commission, Radzi said the cabinet would discuss the matter at its next meeting.

“After the cabinet meeting on Wednesday, and after discussions regarding the terms of reference, the prime minister will suggest the panel’s chairman.”

Asked if former chief justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim would be called before the royal commission, Radzi said: “The royal commission can summon anyone it wants — the person who recorded the video, the actor, or the people mentioned in the clip.”

– quoted from an article published in NST on 19th November 2007 (link)

The lawyer seen is the primary suspect..uhoh, looks like VK Lingam’s goose is cooked! I am curious though, how can the Royal Commission summon Whistle Blower when that person’s identity is unknown? I hope this is not another fishing expedition to get Whistle Blower’s identity in order to ‘pay him back’.

It is sad and funny to see the government reaction to two scandals – crisis in the judiciary versus crisis in the election process. The decision? Distract the public by focusing their attention on the ‘crisis in the judiciary’, even then only on VK Lingam and the implications of corruption of himself and numerous judges. I have a bad feeling that the RC will just bring about VK Lingam’s prosecution and no change in the judicial system 😦

Kudos to his brother though for coming forward (indirectly via DAP), hopefully with solid evidence  :

Lingam’s brother spills the beans

KUALA LUMPUR: The younger brother of lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam has alleged he was privy to various acts of “corruption” involving judges.

V. Thirunama Karasu lodged a police report in March detailing his brother’s alleged relationship with two former chief justices, several judges and a former inspector-general of police in the mid and late 1990s.

Malaysian Democratic Party secretary-general Wee Choo Keong released the police report at a press conference yesterday.

Among other things, Karasu alleged that he used to send his brother to a former chief justice’s house just before midnight and pick him up an hour or so later and that he had delivered handphones and briefcases to several judges, adding he had paid the handphone bills of a former inspector-general of police.

Karasu, met at his house, said: “I did not give Wee consent to announce the police report. But the contents of the police report are true.”

He said he was willing to testify before the proposed royal commission to investigate the Lingam video clip.

– quoted from an article published in NST on 19th November 2007 (link)

Further reading : a list of Karasu’s allegations (courtesy NST)

Cops will be knocking at VK Lingam’s door soon – he’s having sleepless nights I bet 😉

VK Lingam’s Fear

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Written by ak57

November 20, 2007 at 6:15 am

Posted in AK57 Comics, Local News

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