RATHER than questioning the miscarriage of justice in the country, component parties of the unity government such as the DAP should just cease giving lectures on principles of separation of powers and judicial non-interference by the executive.
Basic political science lectures are not appropriate in the present political juncture.
The matter at hand is not complicated but why the Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) and UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was given the discharge not amounting to acquittal (DNAA) of the 47 charges of money laundering, criminal breach of trust and corruption remains to be clarified by the unity government in power.
As a component party in the unity government, DAP should be questioning the former attorney-general (AG) Tan Sri Idrus Harun why the prima facie case established against Zahid was eventually watered down to a DNAA.
It was not the defence but the prosecution under the direction of a newly appointed prosecutor that asked the Kuala Lumpur High Court for the DNAA. Doesn’t such a verdict sound fishy and legally improper?
Why harp on the role of separation of powers and the principle of judicial non-interference on the part of the executive?
The defence of judicial non-interference seems an untenable argument in the light of the direction given by the prosecution to the High Court to give a DNAA to Zahid?
Isn’t this a classic example of judicial interference by the AG Chambers (AGC) to the lead prosecutor?
It is well and nice to be reminded of separation of powers and the idea of judicial non-interference by the executive but unfortunately, there is an unbridgeable gap between what is said and done.
Once a vociferous party that stood against corruption and other wrongdoings in the country, DAP seems to have unfortunately a small role in questioning the perpetration of injustice in the country.
I can understand the necessity of the component parties in the present coalition government to work together in the larger interests of the nation. But then, can these component parties such as the DAP, PKR and others be blind to what is happening right under their noses?
Zahid might be a colleague to the component party leaders but surely his colleagues cannot be deaf and blind to the 47 charges of corruption and other financial irregularities.
Even though the High Court earlier had established that there was a prima facie evidence against Zahid, the prosecution rather than the defence went for DNAA on the ground that there the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Agency (MACC) has yet to complete its investigation.
Free man for good?
Although theoretically Zahid can be charged again, the chances of him being prosecuted in the light of new evidence is practically zero given present political scenario which takes into account the stability and longevity of the Madani government.
DAP as well as other component parties are not being honest and sincere to the needs of the unity government.
By endorsing the sacrosanct principles of separation of powers and judicial non-interference of the executive is merely trying to sweep the case against Zahid under the carpet.
This is especially after knowing very well that the issue of miscarriage of justice has serious consequences for the nation as a whole in general and to the stability of the unity government in power in particular.
Given their political ascendancy, the opposition Perikatan Nasional (PN) component parties are going to achieve maximum results from the government’s political misadventure in trying to provide an escape route to Zahid.
Zahid might be momentarily relieved but the political costs are beyond imagination. Will the government of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim last the full one term seems to be the question foremost in the minds of ordinary Malaysians.
Whatever the justification of Zahid’s DNAA, the Orwellian nightmare related to this has serious consequences for the nation as a whole. – Sept 6, 2023
Prof Ramasamy Palanisamy is the former DAP state assemblyman for Perai. He is also the former deputy chief minister II of Penang.
The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.
Main pic credit: Bernama