LIKAS CASE – WHO REALLY ORDERED?
Parti Rakyat Malaysia (PRM) welcomes the move by the police to investigate into the claim by Judge Datuk Muhammad Kamil Awang that he received a directive by telephone to strike off petitions against the Likas state election results. To be credible, the police must carry out a thorough and fair investigation.
We were shocked to hear earlier when Deputy Prime Minister cum Home Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi, stated in a television interview that the call received by the judge was a hoax. It was most irresponsible for him to make such statement. Such statement should not influence the police, even if it comes from their political master.
Now it is becoming clearer than ever, especially after explanations given by Judge Muhammad Kamil, as reported in the media today, that the call was not a hoax, but originated from none other than the ex-Chie Justice, Tun Eusoff Chin. It has also been disclosed through the media that a few other judges had received similar directive, in connection with other election petitions, from the ex-CJ.
We fail to see what interests the ex-CJ had to make such directives. We can only surmise that he might have acted at the behest of someone higher than he, namely his political master, who could be none other than the Prime Minister himself. The truth of the matter is still not fully known. We call upon the police to investigate if there was any involvement of the Prime Minister or any other minister too.
The Likas case confirmed that there indeed existed phantom voters in that constituency. Actually there have been reports before of phantom voters in many constituencies all over the country. In the case of Likas, the Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) had already submitted a list of phantom voters to the Election Commission. But the Commission did not take any action to investigate or rectify this, as required by the law. The credibility of the Commission is being strongly questioned now. The Commission cannot absolve itself merely by blaming other departments for not cooperating with them. This is a separate issue that has to be looked into too and rectified as early as possible.
Finally, the existence of phantom voters involves also the Gaya parliamentary constituency, where Likas state constituency is located. Although no case has been brought to court against the results of the Gaya parliamentary election, we believe that it should logically follow from the outcome of the Likas case that the election results in Gaya should also be declared null and void. We call upon the Commission to take a stand on this matter.
Dr Syed Husin Ali
15th June 2001