Malaysian Bar reiterates call for AG to explain rationale behind dropping high-profile cases

In his speech at the Opening of the Legal Year 2022 event at the Palace of Justice, its president AG Kalidas said that the explanations are crucial to prevent unnecessary speculations. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
In his speech at the Opening of the Legal Year 2022 event at the Palace of Justice, its president AG Kalidas said that the explanations are crucial to prevent unnecessary speculations. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

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PUTRAJAYA, Jan 14 — The Malaysian Bar today reiterated its call to the attorney general (AG) to explain its decision to discontinue several prosecutions, especially in cases involving high-profile figures.

In his speech at the Opening of the Legal Year 2022 event at the Palace of Justice here, its president AG Kalidas said that the explanations are crucial to prevent unnecessary speculations.

“Central tenets of the rule of law — such as transparency — are building blocks which contribute to public trust and confidence,” he said.

“We appreciate that Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution clothes the AF with wide discretion to institute, conduct or discontinue any proceeding for a criminal offence. However, it is not an absolute or unfettered discretion — as held by the Federal Court in Sundra Rajoo.

“Thus, a measured and perceptive approach is needed. Lack of information will unfortunately only lead to, and fuel, unnecessary speculations,” Kalidas added.

On November 19, Kalidas had in a statement called on the AG Tan Sri Idrus Harun to explain his decision to withdraw an appeal against former Umno minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Mansor’s acquittal in his corruption trial.

On November 16, it was reported that the prosecution withdrew its challenge against the Court of Appeal’s decision to acquit former Tengku Adnan, a former Umno treasurer, in a RM2 million corruption case.

The prosecution had filed a notice of appeal at the Federal Court on July 19, three days after he was freed in a 2-1 majority decision.

On December 21 last year, High Court judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan found the former minister guilty of accepting a sum of RM2 million from Aset Kayamas Sdn Bhd managing director Tan Sri Chai Kin Kong, and sentenced the former minister to 12 months’ imprisonment and fined him RM2 million.

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