Cabinet should on its own volition on Wednesday  decide on the establishment of a Judicial Tribunal to allow Eusoff Chin the opportunity to fully clear himself of all allegations of judicial improprieties

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Sunday): The decision of the Bar Council to convene an emergency general meeting on June 23 on a motion calling for an investigation into the conduct of Chief Justice Tun Mohd Eusoff Chin and his suspension pending the outcome is a step in the right direction to resolve the latest bout in a series of  judicial crisis of confidence to  rock the country in the past decade.

The motion to be put to the Bar Council emergency  general meeting  calls on the Prime Minister to make representations to the King to set up a tribunal, or alternatively,  it calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate Eusoff's conduct and "its implications on the judiciary", and to make recommendations to restore full confidence in the judiciary.

I agree with the Bar Council president Sulaiman Abdullah who said  yesterday that an investigation would give the Chief Justice the best opportunity to refute the serious allegations against him that he has failed to conduct himself in keeping with the cardinal maxim that "Justice must not only be done, but must  be seen to be done".

In fact, the Cabinet should on its own volition at its next meeting on Wednesday decide on the establishment of a Judicial Tribunal to allow Eusoff Chin the opporunity to fully clear himself of all allegations of judicial improprieties, including why he had allowed the cloud over his judicial impartiality to hang over his head for two years since the photographs of  his socialising and  holidaying in New Zealand with lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam surfaced on the Internet in early 1998 without making any attempt to clear his name both to the Malaysian public and the international community.

The Cabinet should recognise that the restoration of public confidence in judicial independence, impartiality and integrity is a priority agenda for the country in the new millennium, and the first step is to prove to the country and the world that  the political leadership in government is capable to handling the latest crisis of confidence in the judiciary in a manner which would enhance and restore confidence and not the opposite - by the establishment of a judicial tribunal.


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman