Aminís explanation for the Attorney-Generalís reduction of  former IGPís charge outrageous, an affront to common sense and an insult to intelligence of elected MPs and ordinary Malaysians

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang
 

(Petaling Jaya, Wednesday): The explanation given by the  Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Senator Datuk Pandikar Amin Mulia in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday as to why the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Mohtar Abdullah reduced the charge against former  Inspector-General of  Police Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Noor for assaulting former Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri  Anwar Ibrahim is outrageous,  an affront to common sense and an insult to the intelligence of elected Members of Parliament and ordinary Malaysians - as it is no explanation at all.

Aminís claims that the Attorney-General reduced  Rahim Noorís charge based  on law and facts after considering the  representations of Rahim Noor's counsel and that "the amendment did not make the offence any less serious in the context of  the law" are uncompletely unacceptable.

Who is Amin trying to dupe when he said that the amendment did not make the offence "any less serious", when under the original charge of attempting to cause grievous hurt to Anwar under Section 325 read together with Section 511 of the Penal Code as recommended by the  Royal Commission of Inquiry which included the former Chief Judge of Malaya, Tan Sri Anuar Zainal Abidin and former Court of Appeal judge Datuk M Shankar and assisted by former Attorney-General Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman, Rahim Noor would have been liable to a maximum sentence of three-and-a-half yearsí jail, a fine or both while the amended charge of causing hurt under Section 323 carries a maxiumum of one year jail, a fine or both.

In the event, Rahim Noor was given a light rap on the wrist and sentenced to two monthsí jail as compared to 18 monthsí jail for former DAP MP for Kota Melaka, Lim Guan Eng and four concurrent six-year jail sentences for Anwar Ibrahim - although the Attorney-Generalís Chambers is appealing against Rahim Noorís sentence for being not commensurate with the offence.  The greater problem is that the reduced charge which the Attorney-General had agreed to for Rahim is not commensurate with the offence.

Amin had deliberately misled Parliament and the nation in denying that the Attorney-General had treated the former Inspector-General of Police leniently when taking into account the original charge, the recommendation of the Royal Commission of Inquiry and the deliberate, calculated and heinous nature of an Inspector-General of Policeís  assault of  a handcuffed and blindfolded Anwar when he was first arrested and taken to the Bukit Aman Police lock-up on the night of Sept. 20, 1998 which expert medical evidence had testified could have been fatal.

As Amin had failed to give any satisfactory or acceptable explanation for the reduction of Rahim Noorís charge, the onus is still on the Attorney-General to demonstrate that he is not above the law and is subject to the principles of parliamentary accountability and transparency by setting out the real reasons as well as the events leading to  the reduction of the charge for Rahim Noor by way of a Ministerial statement from the Prime Ministerís Department  in the current meeting of Parliament.

(22/3/2000)


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman