Thursday, April 30, 2009

Ex-Judge Playing Politics

Hantu Laut

He might have been a judge before but he is also a shining example of the proverbial pot calling the kettle black.His summing up of the Perak crisis transcends the true verdict of the Sultan of Perak rights and powers under the Constitution, telling half a story.

I replicate below the relevant articles of the Perak State Constitution:

12. Appointment of Mentri Besar.
(1) His Royal Highness shall appoint by instrument under his
sign manual and State Seal, a Menteri Besar pursuant to paragraph
(a) of Clause 2 of Article 16.
(2) No person shall be appointed to be Mentri Besar unless he is
of the Malay race and professes the Muslim Religion:
Provided that His Royal Highness may in His discretion waive
either or both of the foregoing requirements of this paragraph
relating to race and the Muslim Religion whenever he shall consider
it expedient so to do.

16. The Executive Council.
(1) His Royal Highness shall appoint an Executive Council.
(2) The Executive Council shall be appointed as follows, that
is to say-
(a) His Royal Highness shall first appoint as Mentri Besar to
preside over the Executive Council a member of the Legis-
lative Assembly who in his judgment is likely to command
the confidence of the majority of the members of the Assem-
bly; and

b) he shall on the advice of the Mentri Besar appoint not more
than ten nor less than four other members from among the
members of the Legislative Assembly;
but if an appointment is made while the Legislative Assembly is
dissolved a person who was a member of the Last Legislative Assem-
bly may be appointed but shall not continue to hold office after the
first sitting of the next Legislative Assembly unless he is a member

(3) Notwithstanding anything in this Article, a person who is a
citizen by naturalisation or by registration under Article 17 of the
Federal Constitution shall not be appointed Mentri Besar.
(4) In appointing a Mentri Besar, His Royal Highness may, in
his discretion, dispense with any provision in the Constitution of the
State restricting his choice of a Mentri Besar, if in his opinion it is
necessary to do in order to comply with the provisions of this Article.
(5) The Executive Council shall be collectively responsible to the
Legislative Assembly.
(6) If the Mentri Besar ceases to command the confidence of the
majority of the members of the Legislative Assembly, then, unless at
his request His Royal Highness dissolves the Legislative Assembly,
he shall tender the resignation of the Executive Council.
(7) Subject to Clause (6) a member of the Executive Council
other than the Mentri Besar shall hold office at His Royal Highness'
pleasure, but any member of the Council may at any time resign his

The relevant articles are 16.2(a) and 16.6 which His Majesty Sultan of Perak has complied with.Article 16.2(a) clearly spelled out that " who in his judgment is likely to command the confidence of the majority of the members of the Assembly"

There is nothing in the Constitution that says that the Sultan must meet both parties before he decides who should he appoints as menteri besar as espoused by our learned judge below

Q: Why do you think the people are angry?

A: Do you know why the Perakians were up in uproar against the Sultan of Perak?

It's because, as any lawyer will tell you, especially as he was Lord President before, that before you make a decision, you cannot see the parties. If you want to meet any of the parties, both of them must be present. You never do so by seeing one and then making a decision. The moment you do that, to the losing side or to any observer will think you have been influenced. So it's the impression that counts.

They were angry with the Sultan because they can sense it in their bones that it is wrong to make a decision to see the other side first.

Sure! the uninitiated men in the streets would be in uproar if too many half-cooked foods are thrown on the streets to feed them.

The Sultan had acted to the letter of the Constitution.To interpret otherwise is mischievous and rousing the rabble.

I must compare what the Sultan did and what I experienced in my many years of doing business.

I used to manage one of the biggest timber exporting companies in this country with markets that span the entire globe from Japan,Korea,the Middle East,Europe and the Americas.

A shipment that takes an entire ship can cost a couple of million ringgit.All the documents and the Bill of Lading would be submitted to the bank to negotiate the L/C (Letter of Credit).As long as all documents are in order and in compliance with the terms and conditions of the L/C the bank would pay you the full sum and get reimbursement from the issuing/reimbursement bank.

The Bill of Lading is the key document to show proof that you have shipped the goods for delivery to the buyer. The bank is only responsible in dealing with documents and not the cargo itself.It is not their business to check whether you have actually shipped the cargo or not or whether the Bill of Lading is genuine or forgery.You can ship a ton of shit as far as you are concerned or not ship anything at all and the bank would still pay you if they deemed your documents are in order.

The same goes with shipping companies.They only deal with carriage of goods and not responsible for what you ship.Take for example plywood in crates or coffee beans in sacks the content of which are not visible.A fly by night or crooked businessman could have loaded broken bricks in the crates and sacks and the shipping company wouldn't have a clue what it is and it is not their responsibility to check the content.They will issue the Bill of Lading and you joyfully go to your bank and get your money.That's why in international business there are a lot of mutual trust and where doubts exist buyer would either send inspectors or surveyors to check and survey the cargo before shipment.

I believe Sultan Azlan Shah has not been wrong in what he did, he deals with the constitution not with emotions and sentiments.

Read the ex-judge full interview here.


donplaypuks® said...

I don't see how the ex Judge can be deemed to be playing politics.

Ordinary people look towards people like him for clarification.

How can our HRH's who live in ivory towers judge what is and is not without consulting both sides to determine if the MB has the command of the confidence of the majority? There is an implied understanding that both sides must be given a fair hearing.

And by his actions, HRH has also conveniently ignored that the incumbent MB cannot be sacked by him, and therefore his position is legally secure! HRH has created a 2MB State and caused everyone a real headache!

More so, when 2 of the defecting MP's are under MACC investigation and 1 even went so far as to ask if it was wrong to take advantage of the situation if women of ill-repute were placed in front of him!

And what about the other judge ruling against the Speaker although the Constitution clearly says the Courts cannot interfere with proceedings in the State Asembly.

No, in such a confusing situation when there is so much legal entanglement, the only and fair solution is to call for fresh elections.

But UMBO/BN knows it will get a hammering in new elections. Is that not sufficient ground to say the UMNO MB does not command the confidence of the PEOPLE which is more important than 59 State Assemblymen!

BennyG said...

At least we know where you stand.

Glad to know that you are in big bisness before and look like you could not care shit about the cargo but we the people want the Authorities to be transparent and responsible for their actions.

Seemed that you could not care to comment what UMNO did after that incident. Look like you don't give a shit as well. Look like you are in bisness again (writing pro-UMNO).

Why are we not surprised?

Anonymous said...

the sultan is only a constuitional monarch, period. the rakyat is not stupid. even the bn mb feels very unsecured.


SM said...


By the way, HRH confirmed his "support" for UMNO recently when he conferred the 'Datuk Seri" on Zamry.
I hope the money makes up for all the "respect & love" that HRH Sultan Azlan Shah once enjoyed by the rakyat & is now forever lost!

halim said...

How appropriate, comparing the sultan's actions to timber trading. Looks like Joe Public is just a balak after all.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree with you and I believe HRH must be keeping his eyes and ears closed when the previous MB came asking him to dissolve the legislative Assembly as three of the law-makers had tendered their resignations unwillingly.Infact,HRH should follow the advice of the previous MB as three of the law-makers are tainted with corruption and loose moral.HRH must have his reason to deny the previous MB a dissolution but the rakyat wanted as it had indicated in the by-election of the Bukit Gantang's constituency.HRH must listen to the wishes of his subjects so that this silver state would not turn into a fiasco state.

Hantu Laut said...

You are not reading the gist of my story in the right perspective.I am not comparing what the Sultan did to timber trading.I say he deals with the Constitution not with sentiments or emotions just as the banker, only deals with documents and not the physical goods.

Hantu Laut said...

Benny G,
My business has nothing to do with the government.It's a family company that spans two generations and we are trading company that buy the products from many suppliers and export them overseas.

The problem with you guys if anybody writes anything supporting the government you assume they are recipients of government's bounty.

Hantu Laut said...


The Sultan refused dissolution of the Assembly because ex-MB Nizar has lost the confidence of the majority of members of the assembly.That's why the constitution gave the Sultan discretionary power to decide.

The Sultan would have granted him dissolution if there were a hung assembly or no clear majority.

I don't agree with the ex-judge that the Sultan must meet both sides.The Sultan has the testimonies of all the assemblymen supporting the BN, which was sufficient enough for him to decide.

By right, Nizar should have tendered his resignation to pave way for those that have got the confidence of the majority.But,unfortunately, as a stooge of DAP he resisted and defied the Sultan's rights under the Constitution.

As for the Speaker I think his action falls outside the purview of Article 72(1) of the Federal Constitution and is ineffectual.
His suspension of the new MB and 6 other assemblymen was a partial partisan decision, bias and unconstitutional.

Anonymous said...

Bull-shit!You are biased towards the previous MB and speaker.Infact,the 3 tainted law-makers should have resigned rather than corruptedly bought over by BN.They should be ashamed of themselves and why so difficult to dissolve the assembly letting Perakians to decide once and for all who should lead the legislative Assembly of Perak.Hiding under the Sultan's umbrella is making BN a mockery of the so-called democratic system.

eddy said...

Bro Hantu Laut, I have read the MI interview with NH Chan and his articles before that. I for one thinks that if a Judge retires he should stay retired and keep his mouth shut otherwise if he has something to say that is disturbing his conscience than he should apply to be allowed to practice and represent ex MB Nizar and exExcos Ngeh and Nga in the ongoing trial proceedings.

It appears that from the MI interview and the articles that he wrote, he does think very,very highly of himself and seemed to look down upon his brother Judges ability to judge.

NH Chan is unilaterally judging on the Federal court ruling in the media without any chance for the Federal Court Judges for that matter the DYMM Sultan also to rebut his argument,he always talk about being fair but is what he is doing now fair?

His comments as an ex so called learned Judge will only make things worse and your article on "ex-judge playing politics" is right to the point. TQ.

p.s: Do not worry about the BN bashers bro, with their warped sense of fairness and justice everything that the BN do or say will be not good enough or are all wrong.

Purple Haze said...

"I don't agree with the ex-judge that the Sultan must meet both sides.The Sultan has the testimonies of all the assemblymen supporting the BN, which was sufficient enough for him to decide."Of the assemblymen said to be supporting the BN, there are 3 "independants". In April 2008, these very same 3 assemblymen pledged their allegiance to the Sultan and support of the PR coalition to govern Perak. The Sultan accepted that.

Now in February 2009, less than 12 months later, these same 3 assemblymen are singing another song.

Surely in HRH's wisdom, he must be perplexed and angry at these 3 assemblymen for not honouring their pledges, made less than a year ago? How can he accept these turncoats who might in another few months change their mind again ? This is potentially a destabilising factor for Perak.

In effect, these three assemblymen have betrayed HRH Sultan.

In your analogy of LCs, you are right. The banks deal with the documents but they also need to exhibit sufficient duty of care to ensure that the documents are genuine and not falsified in any manner. Any hint of fraud or negligence can lead to legal consequences against the bank (as well as other parties).

As for comments by eddy, we have two living former PMs of Malaysia. One of them is still serving as an MP. The other is said to be retired.

Using his/her rationale in saying that "I for one thinks that if a Judge retires he should stay retired and keep his mouth shut", should we also ask the retired PM to do the same ? I don't think he is helping the current PM to do his job.