KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 — National Human Rights Society (Hakam) today applauded the Attorney General’s Chambers (AGC) decision not to appeal the High Court ruling that denial of bail under Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma) is unconstitutional.
Its Secretary General Lim Wei Jiet in a statement today said Section 13 of Sosma is unconstitutional as it takes away the judicial power of the courts which forms the basic structure of the Federal Constitution as held by the Federal Court in the cases of Semenyih Jaya Sdn Bhd vs Hulu Langat Land Office and Indira Gandhi vs Perak islamic Religous Department Director.
“It is also unacceptable because it offends the fundamental concept that an accused is innocent until proven guilty,” said Lim adding that Hakam is particularly encouraged by the Attorney General’s decision not to appeal High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali’s decision which rightfully held that Section 13 of Sosma is unconstitutional.
Lim also said Hakam supports the Attorney-General’s observation that the striking down of Section 13 of Sosma does not mean that there would be jeopardy to public safety — this is because bail could still be denied by a judge if there is sufficient evidence that the accused poses a risk to the public, as in all other criminal cases.
“Hakam trusts the wisdom of the courts to exercise such discretion on bail judiciously in order to strike an appropriate balance between the rights of an accused and public safety. Finally, Hakam reiterates its call to the government to fulfil its manifesto promise of abolishing Sosma in its entirety,” said Lim. — Bernama