Najib the PM, is the greatest law breaker: Lawyer said
Bersih: Najib advises lawyers not to break law but triggers ridicule
Melissa Lee, Malaysia Chronicle Friday, 01 July 2011
Amid accusations that he was the last role model for the legal
Prime Minister Najib Razak urged lawyers not to take part in the July
Bersih 2.0 rally, but could not make a convincing case as his
has gone overboard bending the law in a bid to stop the march for free
Bersih's own organising chairman comes from the legal fraternity, the
Bar Council president Ambiga Sreenevasan, who is well-known and
Among grouses that lawyers themselves have raised over the past weeks
the Najib administration's arrests of anyone caught wearing the Bersih
t-shirt. Bersih itself has not even applied for the police permit. In
words, how it be deemed illegal then and this again raises the next
of, under which law has it been declared illegal?
"We have to give him face for attending the conference but if you were
ask around, did what he say sink in or did he manage to explain why he
done what he did, then you will have a good idea what will happen on
9," a lawyer who was at the Islamic law conference told Malaysia
The biggest lawbreaker
Nonetheless, Najib appeared impervious to the general mood. He urged
lawyers to use legal avenues to air their grouses rather than take to
"Lawyers who are professional do not need to get involved in street
demonstrations because we are a sovereign nation with laws and a
constitution," Najib told the convention.
He also promised a Syariah Bar Council would be formed.
At a separate press conference held today, Deputy Inspector General of
Police Khalid Bakar had said 115 people have been arrested so far in
connection to the Bersih rally. The authorities have cited sedition,
planning an illegal gathering and even waging war against the King as
reasons for these arrests.
Khalid also warned that the draconian Internal Security Act, condemned
both civil and Syariah lawyers, might be used to arrest marchers on
However, supporters of the Bersih rally, meant to drum up support for
and fair elections, have accused Najib of trying to cling to political
lest the rally spark a wave of social consciousness amongs the Malays,
of whom are still loyal to the feudalistic UMNO.
They point out that the Federal Consititution allowed for peaceful
by citizens and slammed Najib for hypocrisy and doublespeak by
issue police permits and thereby indirectly making the rallies
"Law is also about justice not conformity and toeing the line. It's a
for Najib to even be here in a lawyers' convention, what more try and
lecture us on how to stay legal," the lawyer told Malaysia Chronicle.
- Malaysia Chronicle