Media Comment by Lim Kit Siang Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 22nd May 2009:
The hydra-headed monster of the Perak crisis has claimed another victim with the 5-minute finding (and not judgment) of Court of Appeal shot-gun session declaring Zambry lawful Perak Mentri Besar
All who packed into the Court of Appeal in the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya to hear its judgment in the Nizar vs Zambry appeal could not believe that the whole shot-gun session was over in five minutes of delivery, not of a judgment, but findings of the Court of Appeal.
There was no reasoned grounds of judgment but mere findings of the Court of Appeal in an unanimous decision, i.e. 3 – 0.
As Professor Shad Faruqui had presciently written in his weekly newspaper column, the Perak crisis has become “a hydra-headed monster that cannot be eliminated by ding-dong judicial decisions”, and today, the hydra-headed monster has claimed another victim with the five-minute finding (not judgment) of the Court of Appeal shot-gun session declaring Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir as the lawful Perak Mentri Besar.
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak told the Singapore press that Barisan Nasional suffered from a public relations problem in not giving proper explanation of the Perak political and constitutional crisis and allowing the Pakatan Rakyat to distort and poison the minds of Malaysians.
Najib cannot be more wrong. The Barisan Nasional’s problem in Perak is not a “PR” problem but something more basic and fundamental – that the unethical, undemocratic, illegal and unconstitutional power grab he orchestrated in early February went against all canons of ethics and propriety as well as violates accepted democratic and constitutional principles.
Najib cannot win in the court of public opinion even with the 3-0 Court of Appeal judgment. All it means is that the restoration of national and international confidence in the independence, impartiality and integrity of the judiciary is still a long distance away.
For Najib’s own good in the next general election, he should be bold enough to admit that he had committed a colossal error of judgment in orchestrating the illegal power grab in Perak and agree to dissolve the Perak State Assembly to return the mandate to the people in a Perak state general election for Perakians to elect the government of their choice.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor