The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said yesterday that it is disappointed that Malaysia’s Federal Court ruled to uphold the imprisonment of opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim.
The attempt by the Umno-dominated BN government to rush the DNA Bill begs many questions, observes Tota. Despite opposition by the Opposition, whose ranks boast first-class legal brains compared to the lawyers in the government ranks, the Bar Council and legal and medical experts outside, the government exposes itself as a irrational and foolhardy one. No right-thinking Malaysian will buy the government’s claim that the timing of the Bill had nothing to do with Anwar’s Sodomy II trial.
The civilised world must be outraged by what is taking place in Malaysia. Justice is being trampled upon and truth is being sacrificed for political expediency without shame or remorse. And it is not fair that we have to suffer this humiliation.
Thinking Malaysians are perplexed how on earth the police went ahead to investigate Anwar Ibrahim for sodomy even though there were allegedly medical reports confirming that there was no basis for their action.
In a rhetorical stance, the Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar posed this question to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, “What is he afraid of?” Aliran would like to pose this very question to Syed Hamid, “What is he afraid of?” Why are they afraid to release the police report lodged by Mohd Saiful Bukari Azlan against Anwar Ibrahim on 28 June alleging sodomy?
Perhaps the only thing that can save Anwar, Badawi and Malaysia in the long run is an investigation and trial that is absolutely objective, transparent and accountable, writes Farish A Noor. For even the slightest hint of bias or irregularity will add credence to Anwar’s claim that the accusations against him are part of a political plot to prevent him from returning to politics; a fact that was stated in his closing remarks during his televised debate where he stated that he intended to contest in a by-election soon.
In our cover story, Khoo Boo Teik looks at how Anwar has come to personify many dissident, even conflicting tendencies. His two different images – that of a conquering political leader and frequently disabled politician – capture society’s current predicament. We have moved towards more open dissent; and yet we are unsure if we can really achieve a more open political system. This should be seen in the light of Anwar’s experience of earlier defeat and the different phases of his public life, as outlined in an earlier piece by Boo Teik. Anwar’s experience has given him a better inkling of the issues that concern the rakyat.
At a time when all of Asia is on the brink of a global recession sparked by the rising costs of oil and gas and the collapse of the US dollar, the issues that count ought to be structural-economic ones. But what has transpired over the past two weeks has shown that despite the flashy suits and corporate videos broadcasting the bold and brazen image of Malaysia Inc, the country’s politics remains trapped in the swamp of the banal and ridiculous, laments Farish Noor.