Shafee’s unprecedented and most questionable road-show an admission that although he had won in the Federal Court with 5-0 verdict in his favour on Anwar Sodomy II trial, he has lost out in the court of public opinion

Its really so pathetic – Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah going on a UMNO-sponsored national roadshow to have a second “ bite of the cherry” in his prosecution of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on Sodomy II case.

Yes, Shafee has won in the Federal Court on Feb. 10 with a shocking 5-0 unanimous decision to dismiss Anwar’s appeal and to sent him back to jail for five years, Anwar’s fourth incarceration.

Even those who were most pessimistic about Anwar’s chances and had believed before the Federal Court decision that he would lose in the Federal Court appeal had expected either a 3-2 verdict or at worst a 4-1 decision.

Everybody was floored when there was an unanimous 5-0 decision and there were not only no dissenting judgment, there was no other judgment from the five-member Federal Court quorum, apart from the single judgment by the Chief Justice, Tun Arifin Zakaria!

Although Anwar had lost in the court of the Malaysian judiciary, he had won in two other courts –the court of public opinion in Malaysia and the court of international opinion, as it will not be easy to find another Federal Court judgment in the past two decades which had met with such instant universal condemnation, not only inside the country but also outside.

The decision for UMNO to go on a national roadshow featuring Shafee, Anwar prosecutor-by-fiat, is not only unprecedented and questionable, raising grave and vexing ethical questions about Shafee’s role as prosecutor-by-fiat as well as a practising lawyer, but is as good as an admission that although Shafee had won in the Federal Court with 5-0 verdict in his favour, he has lost out in the court public opinion.

Will Shafee next head an international campaign to win back support in the court of international opinion, as foreign governments like United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Germany, Switzerland (which declared that it would raise Anwar’s jailing at the next meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva), the European Union; international legal, parliamentary and human rights organisations like the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, International Federation for Human Rights, LAWASIA and the Law Council of Australia and international press like Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and the Economist had all spoken up to condemn the Federal Court decision?

Shafee is also Malaysia’s representative to the regional human rights body, the ASEAN Inter-Governmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR).

Will the ambit of his responsibility on the ASEAN Inter-Governmental Commission on Human Rights now be expanded to include convincing the other ASEAN governments, if not the people of other ASEAN nations, about Anwar’s guilt in the Sodomy II case.

Shafee, UMNO and the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should think deep and hard whether such a nation-wide road show for Shafee to have a second bite of the cherry to win in the court of public opinion on Anwar’s prosecution on Sodomy II should proceed or be halted immediately, as it is setting many deplorable precedents affecting the administration of justice and ensuring clean, honest and healthy politics in Malaysia.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah