By AARON GODWIN
PENAMPANG : A Parti Warisan Sabah leader has dismissed the contention made by Tunku Abdul Aziz Ibrahim who called for the scope of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) on the allegations of judicial misconduct to include Pakatan Harapan’s 22 months of government.
The Treasurer General of Warisan, Terrence Siambun said that it is wrong for Tunku Abdul Aziz to infer that former Chief Justice, Tan Sri Richard Malanjum, may have made biased judgements favouring PH when he was sitting in office just because he now supports Warisan Plus.
“Every individual in Malaysia has the right to support any registered political party and in the case of Tan Sri Richard, he is now enjoying his retirement and taking full pleasure in supporting any party that he likes; be it PN, BN or even Warisan Plus.
“In fact, there have been several instances of former Chief Justices who took active part in politics right after they retired such as the former Lord President, Tun Salleh Abas who stood as a candidate for Semangat 46 in 1995 and for PAS in 1999.
“Former Chief Justice Tun Abdul Hamid Mohammad did not contest but his statements reflected his pro-Islam stance on many issues,” he said in a statement today.
Aziz had said that the RCI should also include a review of the appointments of judges as well as judicial decisions throughout PH’s 22 months as government because former chief justice Richard Malanjum’s open support for Warisan Plus raised “serious doubts” about the judiciary’s independence.
Siambun questioned Aziz’s timing and motive and said the call to set up the RCI on judicial misconduct during the PH era is baseless, unfounded and politically motivated.
“Tan Sri Richard did not sit alone in any of the Federal Court panels to hear constitutional and other cases of public interest. Instead, when he was the Chief Justice, he introduced reforms which won admiration from the legal circles including political leaders and all sections of the society.
“Among the most significant reforms is the empanelling of seven judges to hear cases of public interest and a panel of nine judges for matters of Constitutional importance and this was conveniently left out by Abdul Aziz,” he said.
“So how would a bench containing seven and nine judges in the PH era lead to judicial misconduct as Abdul Aziz alleged?” he pointed out.