KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 15 — The Chief Justice’s Office said today it had no legal power to act against a top judge accused of interference in cases because he was retired, Malaysiakini reported today.
The revelation was part of an affidavit made in reply to lawyer Sangeet Kaur Deo, who filed a suit to declare the present chief justice (CJ) as having failed to defend the integrity and credibility of the judiciary.
The affidavit was affirmed by a special officer to the Chief Justice Mohd Aizuddin Zolkeply, the news portal reported.
“The ‘top judge’ concerned had retired, hence no action could be taken under the Judges Code of Ethics 2009 read with the Judges Ethics Committee Act 2010,” the office said in an affidavit-in-reply filed on Monday.
It added that differing accounts were also given about the alleged reprimand against Court of Appeal Judge Hamid Sultan Abu Backer by the implicated judge.
Hamid claimed he was censured for writing a dissenting judgment in the M. Indira Gandhi case.
In an explosive allegation against the CJ, Hamid had in a sworn affidavit claimed a judge he named as “ARLC” had interfered in a majority decision in the proceeding to acquit the late DAP national chairperson Karpal Singh of his charge under the Sedition Act, leading Karpal’s sedition conviction to be upheld by the Court of Appeal.
Hamid first made the allegation in an affidavit in November last year.
An internal probe on the allegation was subsequently launched, but the CJ’s Office said the inquiry is now suspended pending police investigation in the matter.
The Court of Appeal judge also claimed in his affidavit that CJ Tan Sri Richard Malanjum was reluctant to have a Royal Commission of Inquiry to probe the judiciary.
Hamid has since repeated his allegations in an affidavit supporting Sangeet, which was filed yesterday.