DAP to seek appointment with Prime Minister to urge him to reconsider the appointment of Gani Patail as AG as Article 145(1) has not been invoked to advise the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the appointment


Media Conference Statement 2
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Wednesday): At long last, the Minister in the Prime Ministerís Department, Datuk Dr. Rais Yatim has admitted what everybody knew for the past fortnight, that Rais had committed faux pas in announcing the appointment of Datuk Abdul Gani Patail as the new Attorney-General on the same day as Datuk Seri Ainum Mohd Saaid had submitted to him her resignation letter on November 19, 2001.

This was because there was no way Article 145(1) of the Constitution on the appointment of the Attorney-General by the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the advice of the Prime Minister could be complied with to permit Rais to validly and legally make the announcement of the appointment of a new Attorney-General on the very same day as  Ainumís submission of her resignation, which also showed utter contempt for  the Constitution, the Yang di Pertuan Agong and even the Conference of Rulers, as the various actions  that must be taken under the Constitution to appoint the new Attorney-General  after Ainum had submitted her resignation to Rais include at least the following  six  separate steps:
 

 
The Speaker, Tun Mohamad Zahir Ismail was right in his hunch, from his experience of the constitution as a judge, that Gani has not been appointed as the new Attorney-General - but as Speaker, he should not be relying on hunches and experience, but must be based solidly on facts based on information given to him by the Prime Ministerís Department.

In fact, based on his hunch and everybodyís guess that Gani could not be properly appointed as the new Attorney-General yet, it would be an additional powerful reason why the Speaker should have allowed the motion by the DAP MP for Seputah, Teresa Kok to adjourn the House to debate the constitutionality and propriety of the appointment of a new Attorney-General as a matter of grave public importance and interest.

Rais has now said that the  government should be allowed to proceed with the appointment of Gani as Attorney-General.  He is again commiting another faux pas.

Mahathir should reconsider his intention to appoint Gani as the highest law officer of the land as never before in the nationís history has the  proposed appointment of the new Attorney-General plunged the country into a new crisis of confidence in the system of justice in Malaysia.

There had  been the past example  of an Attorney-General leaving office under a cloud, but never before had there been a single case of an Attorney-General assuming office under a cloud!

In these circumstances, the Prime Minister and all Cabinet Ministers should place public confidence in the administration of justice above all other considerations and decide whether justice and  the national interests could  be served in proceeding with the intention to appoint Gani as the new Attorney-General.

In such a review, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet should seek the widest consultation of views from all sectors of society, in particular the Judiciary, the Bar Council, Parliamentarians, political leaders and representatives of the civil society.
DAP will  seek  an appointment with Prime Minister to urge him to reconsider the appointment of Gani Patail as AG as Article 145(1) has not been invoked to advise the Yang di Pertuan Agong on the appointment of the new Attorney-General.

(5/12/2001)



*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman