Thursday, January 17, 2008

MORE PICS, LIES & DENIALS – Day 4 - RCI; Dr Mahathir - Spirit is willing, Truth is Not – Only Denials; Tengku Adan: Denies involvement & Lingam Drunk?

UPDATE Day 5 – RCI: January 18, 2008 11:39 AM

Eusoff Chin Says Lingam Just An Acquaintance

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 (Bernama) -- Former chief justice Tun Eusoff Chin told a royal commission of inquiry here on Friday that lawyer Datuk V. K. Lingam was just an acquaintance. Eusoff, the 11th witness at the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the controversial Lingam video clip, gave the reply when asked whether he knew Lingam well. Eusoff, who retired as the chief justice in 2000, said he knew Lingam when he (Eusoff) was a High Court judge and the lawyer had conducted cases before him. The inquiry, to verify the authenticity of a video clip which shows a senior lawyer apparently brokering the appointment of judges, entered its fifth day today

= == = == == January 18, 2008 13:41 PM

ABOVE & BELOW: Former chief justice Tun Eusoff Chin arriving on Day 5 of the R C I to testify

Lingam Tagged Along On New Zealand Trip, Eusoff Chin Tells Inquiry

ABOVE & BELOW: Acquittance's going on holidays in NZ with theri respective families

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 (Bernama) -- Retired chief justice Tun Eusoff Chin told the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the controversial Lingam video clip Friday that he allowed lawyer Datuk V.K.Lingam to tag along with him and his family on a holiday trip to New Zealand in 1994 despite then holding the number one post in the judiciary. Eusoff, 73, revealed the details of the holiday trip after he was grilled by the Malaysian Bar representative on the trip from December 22 to 30 1994."I bumped into him.

He wanted to tag along with me. It is not my problem. How can I stop him?" Eusoff said. Eusoff said Lingam, who was also in New Zealand with his wife and two daughters, told him that he wanted to come along with Eusoff and his family during their stay in New Zealand. He also said that Lingam and he took the same flights during the holiday as well as stayed in the same hotel at one point in New Zealand, and took five to 10 photographs together. "Everywhere I went, he wanted to take pictures with me. How can I stop (him)?" said Eusoff, adding that he (Eusoff) even obliged everybody, including students, who wanted to take pictures with him.

= == = == =January 18, 2008 14:13 PM

Lingam Offered To Pay Half Of Transport Cost In New Zealand, Says Eusoff Chin

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 (Bernama) -- The Royal Commission of Inquiry into the controversial Lingam video clip Friday heard that retired chief justice Tun Eusoff Chin and lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam equally shared the cost of transportation between two cities during a holiday with their families in New Zealand in 1994. Eusoff, who was then the chief justice, said he only paid half of the transportation cost for a van from Christchurch to Queenstown after Lingam offered to pay the other half. Eusoff said he, his wife Toh Puan Rosaini Mustaffa and their two children, Zubaidah and Johan, had hired a travel agency van driven by a New Zealander to go to Queenstown.

Malaysian Bar representative Ranjit Singh asked Eusoff why he did not tell Lingam he was not going to share the van with him (Lingam) and his family as it was wrong for a judge to do such a thing because Lingam was a lawyer and had appeared before him in court. Eusoff replied that the van could accommodate between four and nine people and "there were eight of us in the van". Ranjit Singh also asked whether Lingam had gotten hold of Eusoff's holiday itinerary and planned the trip just to be close to Eusoff. Eusoff answered: "I can't say what he (Lingam) was thinking but Justice Datuk Edgar Joseph Jr, who had just come back from New Zealand, told me that it was a nice place to visit. "I then asked my secretary to contact the travel agent to arrange a trip for me for a week or so. However, he (Lingam) wanted to tag along. It was out of my control."

BELOW: Lingam & Vincent holidaying where?

and MUCH More Go H E RE Next Post on

More Pics - Eusoff Chin Unrepresented Told to get Get a Lawyer; Evasive with Denials; Confusing – Met Lingam First at Changi Airport or NZ Zoo to tag along?

His lapse in memory is also astounding. Knowing someone for so long, he claimed he cannot recognize Lingam in the Video Clip but “sounds like him

plus a Blast from the past 7 years ago - the reactions then

= == = == == == = == = =ORIGINAL POST BELOW:

MORE PICS, LIES & DENIALS – Day 4 - RCI; Dr Mahathir - Spirit is willing, Truth is Not – Only Denials; Tebgku Adan: Denies involvement & said Lingam : Mad or Drunk?

Late UPDATE from theSUN

DrM: Final decision mine

ABOVE: Mocking Dr Mahathir over his lack of recall of the events in 2001

R. Surenthira Kumar and S. Tamarai Chelvi; theSUN

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 17, 2008): Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who was prime minister when the Lingam Video Clip, which showed the senior lawyer allegedly brokering judicial appointments, testified in the Royal Commission of Inquiry today. This is what he said:

Question: Tun, were you influenced by any party/ies on the appointment of (Tun) Ahmad Fairuz as the president of the Court of Appeal?
Mahathir: In agreeing to the recommendation, I have to listen to other people’s views … during social meetings … and I have to take them into consideration. But the final decision is made by me.

Q: (Former Chief Justice Tun) Mohamed Dzaiddin asked you to reconsider the two names nominated by him, Dr Andrew Chew and Zainuddin Ismail, for the post of High Court judges?
Mahathir: Yes, true.

Q: Can you explain the reason the two names proposed by Mohamed Dzaiddin were not appointed?
I can’t remember the reason.

Q: Did Datuk V.K.Lingam, Datuk Tengku Adnan and Tan Sri Vincent Tan see you about the appointment of Tan Sri Abdul Malek Ahmad as the chief judge of Malaya?
Mahathir: No.

Q: Was it true Abdul Malek’s appointment was rejected because he was anti-prime minister?
Mahathir: His nomination was rejected, but that was not the reason.

Q. Were your reasons for rejection of Abdul Malek discussed with Mohamed Dzaiddin? The reasons for the non-acceptance, did you discuss it with him?
Mahathir: I listen to a lot of people and make my own assessment. I do not explain to anyone.

Q. Do you know Tan Sri Vincent Tan, and what is the extent of your relationship?
r: I have known him for many years and have been to his place … we are friends.

Q.. Do you know Datuk V.K.Lingam?
: Have read about him. Only knew him lately after I engaged him to represent me in the defamation suit brought against me by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Q. Could he have been introduced to you by Vincent Tan?
Mahathir: Probably, … could have contacted him through Vincent Tan.

Before Mahathir made an exit, commission member Datuk Mahadev Shankar posed a question to him.
Mahadev: Were your reasons for rejection of Abdul Malek discussed with Mohamed Dzaiddin? The reasons for the non-acceptance, did you discuss it with him?
Mahathir: I listen to a lot of people and make my own assessment. I do not explain to anyone.

Mahadev: Not even to the chief justice?
Mahathir: No.

= == = == == = == = == == = == =
Dr M: I was not influenced in appointing CJ

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 17, 2008): Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, testifying today before the panel investigating the Lingam video clip - an unprecedented appearance by a former prime minister before a Royal Commission of Inquiry - said he had not been influenced by any person or party in the appointment of Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim as chief justice.The 86-year-old statesman was replying to questions from Deputy Public Prosecutor Datuk Nordin Hassan.

He also answered in the negative when asked by Nordin if he had been influenced by anyone in the appointment of other senior members of the judiciary. Mahathir walked into the court room after the proceedings began at 10am and his name was called as the ninth witness. It took nearly two minutes before Mahathir, clad in a grey-coloured suit, stepped in and bowed before the Commission. Mahathir’s aides, lawyers and daughter Datuk Paduka Marina were also present.

After Mahathir took his seat, his lawyer Tengku Sofea Jewa, who was seated in the front-most bench, stood up and said Mahathir had something to convey to the Commission. With her were her colleagues, Datuk Dr Yaacob Hussin Merican and Datuk M. Chandran.

"Our client conveys his assurance to the Commission that he will render his fullest cooperation and answer all questions, even though from our perspective, as his counsel, the questions are not relevant to the terms of reference of this Commission," she said.

Commission chairman Tan Sri Haidar Mohd Noor then told her it is the Commission's duty to control the proceedings of the inquiry and they will conduct it in a manner they deem fit. Nordin began by asking Mahathir to go through the letter correspondences between him, the former Chief Justice Tun Mohamed Eusoff Chin and former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Samsuddin Osman on the appointment of judges.To most of the questions posed on the documents, Mahathir confirmed he received and sent it.

But to the other questions on the rejection of the nomination of two lawyers - Dr Andrew Chew and Zainuddin Ismail - who were nominated for High Court judge positions, Mahathir said he could not remember the details. Lawyer representing former Chief Justice Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah, Wong Chong Wah, then questioned Mahathir.

Wong: Can you remember the time when Mohamed Dzaiddin recommended the deceased Tan Sri Abdul Malek Ahmad for the chief judge of Malaya’s post in favour of former Chief Justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim?
Mahathir: I can’t remember precisely, I did hear talks of Abdul Malek being recommended for the post, but the decision was made by me.

Wong: Can you remember not agreeing to Mohamed Dzaiddin’s recommendation to nominate Abdul Malek for the post?
Mahathir: I can’t remember him recommending Abdul Malek for the post.

Wong attempted to refresh Mahathir’s memory by asking him to refer to the correspondence between him and Mohamed Dzaiddin who nominated Abdul Malek for the Chief Judge of Malaya’s post and if he still disagreed with the nomination he could consider Tan Sri Siti Norma Yaacob for the post.
I can’t remember whether I agreed or not … this is a letter from Mohamed Dzaiddin.

Wong: "Do you have in your possession, a copy of the letter dated June 25, 2001, which you sent to Mohamed Dzaiddin pertaining your rejection of Ahmad Malek’s nomination for the post.
: No, it is not in my possession.

Wong: Do you remember the contents of the letter?
Mahathir: No, I can’t remember.

Next to question Mahathir was M. Puravalen, the lawyer who represented former Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
He asked Mahathir to rekindle his memories and took him back to sometime in August 1999, in relation to a meeting he had with a former Bank Negara official Datuk Abdul Murad Khalid, in the
Palace of Golden Horses in Sri Kembangan.
Puravalen said after the meeting with Mahathir, the senior bank official confessed in a press conference held soon after the meeting that he was the secret banker for Anwar who was implicated for alleged corrupt practices.
Haidar asked Puravalen where his question was headed to and the lawyer said it relates to the presence of the names mentioned in the video-clip, Datuk V.K.Lingam, Tan Sri Vincent Tan, Datuk Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor and also former Attorney-General and Tan Sri Mohtar Abdullah and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Rahim Noor.

Puravalen: You have met them previously?
Mahathir: I met a lot of people in many places … I can’t identify all the names.

Christopher Leong from the Bar Council then took his turn to question Mahathir.
He said the questions would be based on the correspondences between Mahathir, Mohamed Dzaiddin and Samsudin over the appointment of the senior judges' posts and also the transcript of the video-clip.

Leong: Would others in the Prime Minister’s Department have, at where Tengku Adnan was a Deputy Minister in-charge of law, have access to these documents?
Mahathir: I am not sure, but the others who are not connected to the matter would not have access to these documents.
Haidar then asked Leong to ask a direct question instead of going in circles.

Leong: Would Tengku Adnan have access to these documents?
Mahathir: "These documents are handled not only by me, but also my secretary, typist and other officers who deal with these documents. If the documents are laid on the table ... people would have access to them.

Leong: Would Tengku Adnan … officially not accidentally, have access to these documents?"
Mahathir: No.

Scrutinised on the rejection of Abdul Malek by Mahathir after he was nominated by Mohamed Dzaiddin for the chief judge of Malaya’s post, Mahathir said he could not recall the incident.
When pressed further for the reason Abdul Malek’s nomination was rejected, Mahathir said: "After hearing people’s views, I made my decision. The prerogative was with me to make the decision. I do not have to tell anyone the reasons."

Asked who the main sources of the information that Mahathir sought from before making his decision, the former premier said he could not remember.
"I talked to the public and also took into consideration the Chief Justice’s views, before I made the decision. The sources were at random ... could be civil servants, senior police personnel, ACA, obtained verbally and not in written form, in order to choose the right candidate," he added.

On the additional names provided by him to the list of nominees to be proposed to be promoted as High Court judges, Leong asked where Mahathir obtained the names from.

"From many of the experienced officers, could be from the Attorney-General Chambers, civil service department and known personalities," said Mahathir.

Leong asked if the names could have been proposed by the former Chief Justice Tun Mohamed Eusoff Chin, Mahathir said he could not remember.

Before Mahathir made an exit, Commission member Datuk Mahadev Shankar posed a question to him.

Mahadev: Were your reasons for rejection of Abdul Malek discussed with Mohamed Dzaiddin? The reasons for the non-acceptance, did you discuss it with him?
Mahathir: I listen to a lot of people and make my own assessment. I do not explain to anyone.

Mahadev: Not even to the chief justice.
Mahathir: No.

= = == = == =

‘Lingam must have been mad or drunk’

KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 17, 2008): What Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor told the Royal Commission of Inquiry:
Q. When you saw the eight-minute video clip, did you take up to Lingam and say ‘how dare you do this’?
A: He is either mad or drunk. I did not bother to call. I don’t know what he is saying. What he said is not true. I don’t know who he is talking (to).

Q: Until today, you did not take up to him or contact him to clear your name?
A: No

Q. Can you comment on the parts of the transcript of the handphone conversation which made specific references to you?
A. My name is frequently used by other people. I don’t’ know. Maybe my name has value. Aesthetic value. I don’t know why this happens to me.

TOURISM Minister Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor referred to lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam today as "either mad or drunk" when asked to comment on references made to Tengku Adnan in the video clip.

Tengku Adnan, who testified in the Royal Commission of Inquiry, said this when asked by commission member Datuk Mahadev Shankar if he had taken any steps to "clear his name" since the imputation of the video clip was that Tengku Adnan had breached the Official Secrets Act.
Mahadev: When you saw the eight-minute video clip, the imputation was that you had access to documents and breached the Official Secrets Act, so did you take it up with Lingam and say ‘ How dare you do this’?

Tengku Adnan: He is either mad or drunk. I did not bother to call. I don’t know what he is saying. What he said is not true. I don’t know who he is talking (to).

Mahadev: Until today, you did not take up to him or contact him to clear your name?
Tengku Adnan: No.

Earlier, Tengku Adnan, 53, told the inquiry he knew Lingam, whom he identified as the person in the video clip, because he had business dealings with Lingam when he was a businessman, before he became active in politics in 1999.
Tengku Adnan, who said he had watched the eight-minute video clip on YouTube in Penang last year, said that initially, he could not recognise the speaker, but after looking at it longer, he was able to.

At this point, commission chairman Tan Sri Haidar Mohamed Noor told DPP Azmi Ariffin to let Tengku Adnan watch the video clip.
After watching the full 14-minute video clip, Tengku Adnan was asked again whether he could identify the man and replied: "V.K. Lingam."

Commission member Tan Sri Steve Shim Lip Kiong then asked Tengku Adnan to comment as certain parts of the video clip made specific references to him.
Tengku Adnan said his name was frequently used by other people. "I don’t’ know. Maybe my name has value, aesthetic value," he said.
He said his name was being used "a lot of times, even in the case of collecting donations, building mosques or schools". "I don’t know why this happens to me," Tengku Adnan said.

Earlier, referred to 11 parts of the transcript of the video clip and asked if the statements were true, Tengku Adnan said they were not.

The 11parts of the transcript which Tengku Adnan denied were:

1. so ...Tengku Adnan said ... Aa… . I told Tengku Adnan yesterday I had a meeting with him. He said PM is already very angry with him ... And he said no problem, he said he is going to make you ... Acting or ... aa…confirm your position as PCA ... working very hard and then get Tan Sri Mokhtar as the CJM lah.
2. It ... according to Tengku, I’m going to see him tomorrow, there is a letter sent to ... ah ... CJ … ah I mean to Tan Sri Dzaiddin that Datuk Heliliah, Datuk Ali ... and Datuk Ramli Datuk Ramli and Datuk Ma’arop be made judges … and aa … he rejected ah ... that Dr Andrew Chew and apa itu Zainuddin Ismail lah because Zainuddin Ismail who condemned your appointment and Tan Sri Mokhtar’s appointment.
3. Actually, I told Tengku Adnan to inform PM, PM to call you for a meeting. But I ... I will organise this so that Tengku Adnan will call you directly ... and then I got your number. I will tell him to call you directly to arrange for you to meet PM lah. Ah so should be ok. Then ah ... correct, correct, correct, because it is very important that key players must be there.
4. Ah, but never mind, I will do this... I will get the ... Tengku Adnan to arrange for PM to call you and Tan Sri Vincent Tan ... for PM to call.
5. One day I went to Vincent Tan’s house, I fired ... him at night in the house. I said bloody hell if you don’t do this who will do it? All these people, Tun Eusoff Chin, Datuk Ahmad Fairuz, Tan Sri Zainon all fought for us. Then he called Tengku Adnan. I told Tengku Adnan. He said, saya bukan Perdana Mentri
Malaysia lah, you know, if the old man don’t want listen to me, go to hell.
6. But now, the PM is very alert because every time he gets letters from Tan Sri Dzaiddin ... he calls Tengku Adnan, he said discuss with Vincent, come and discuss and ...Yes, yes ... yah, correct ... correct ... Ya, but you see although I know PM, but my views ... I am a lawyer in practice, My views are not ... I go through them, I go through them lah.
7. don’t worry, we will organise this, and if Tan Sri Vincent ... if Tan Sri Vincent and Tengku Adnan want to meet you privately, they will ... I will get them to ... I will call you. We will organise a private arrangement ... in a very neutral place.
8. I ... I am constantly working on this ... I ... Ya, ya, don’t worry, don’t worry, don’t worry ah ... We work hard on this, Datuk, and then aa ... if Tan Sri Vincent and Tengku want to see you, I will organise it in such a ... confidential place.
9. Don’t worry. Dzaiddin recommended Malik … Malik Ahmad to be Chief Judge of Malaya, but we went aa (cluk cluk sound) cut cut cut cut cut (low tones) I ,Tengku Adnan Vincent went and saw PM lah
Chinese Man: Ah
Indian Man: ... (got him) ... thrown out because he is anti PM.
Chinese Man: Ah
Indian Man: We put Fairuz in.
10. So, now I am working very hard. So he agreed to meet Vincent Tan and PM and ah ... What you call ...
Tengku Adnan
11. Indian Man: Because ah ... he knows … I am a … but when PM calls me on Anwar’s case, I can tell him ... He he will listen
Chinese man: Ya
Indian Man: But if I go promote so and so, that means I got interest
Chinese Man: Ya, ya, ya
Indian Man: So, I don’t do that
Chinese Man: Ya
Indian Man: I use Vincent and Tengku to go there and I go fuck them up. They go and do that!

When Tengku Adnan was refered to item 10 of the transcript and asked whether it was true, he replied: "Can I say something? He (Lingam) must be drunk!"

To another question, Tengku Adnan said he has known Tan Sri Vincent Tan through business dealings since the 1990s. Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor said he had never spoken to either Datuk V K Lingam or Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim over the phone. Tengku Adnan who said he didnt know V.K Lingam very well, described his relationship as "extremely limited" and could not remember the first time he met Limgam, adding that he met a lot of lawyers. "I knew Lingam as he was used in agreements. That was my relationship, not otherwise," said Tengku Adnan who explained he was then in the panel of one of the Berjaya companies and Lingam (who is a lawyer) was used by the company.

During cross-examination by lawyer Christopher Leong, who represents Malaysian Bar, Tengku Adnan said he did not have Lingam's handphone number and had never spoken to him over the phone, even in respect of work.
Asked whether he knew Fairuz, he answered: "Of course," adding that Fairuz was the Chief judge of
Malaya, and that he knew him only in that capacity.
As to whether he had known Fairuz in the "social sense", Tengku Adnan said he did not, and had never spoken to him.
Asked whether, in the course of his duties as deputy minister in the Prime Minister's Department between 2001 and 2002, he had at any occasion discussed the appointment of judges, Tengku Adnan said he had not.
As to whether he had any access to documents ( tendered by former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Samsuddin Osman) pertaining to appointment and promotions of judges, Tengku Adnan said "No", adding he also did not know where such documents were kept. He agreed with Leong that he knew Vincent Tan as he (Tengku Adnan) was a shareholder in various companies controlled by Vincent Tan. But as to whether he was a shareholder of Berjaya Group, Tengku Adnan said he could not remember as it was before 1998, when he was a shareholder of many companies. To another question, he said he could not remember if he was ever a director of a company called Berjaya Industrial Berhad. Asked whether he had interaction with Vincent Tan in 2001, Tengku Adnan said they would have met in official functions, "Otherwise, no".

Meanwhile, lawyer M.Puravelan, who represents Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim informed the panel that Anwar will be in Hongkong on Jan 23 and asked if he could testify before that. He also told the panel that two witnesses (names not revealed) want to assist the inquiry and was told to provide the commission with statements of the witnesses to decide if they need to be called to assist the Inquiry. Puravelan said he will prepare them overnight and hand them to the Commission to decide if they are relevant to the inquiry.

Updated: 10:14PM Thu, 17 Jan 2008


= == = == = = =Original POST Below

Short is the memory of the key players mentioned in the Lingam Video Clip Saga. When pressed for details and confirmations of the events and circumstances mentioned in the clip, Dr Mahathir & Tengku Adan fell back to the classical defense strategy of denial - not involved in what was said and “can’t remember” or “my prerogative” and to the extent of calling the main actor in the clip “mad or drunk”. Six years is a long time to them but all the evidences are there to refresh their memories. So getting to the truth of the matter is a winding path even for the RCI. What is the best solution ?– look overseas and get hold of the latest technology – in subjecting them to a “lie detector test”.

Jan 17, 2008

Mahathir denies he was used by outsiders to appoint top judges

KUALA LUMPUR - FORMER leader Mahathir Mohamad denied on Thursday he was manipulated by outsiders into appointing top judges in a scandal that has cast doubts about the independence of Malaysia's judiciary. Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia's longest serving prime minister from 1981 to 2003, was testifying before a government inquiry into a secretly recorded video clip that showed a man believed to be a prominent lawyer, V.K. Lingam, boasting that he could get key judicial appointments made with Mr Mahathir's help. Lawyers and opposition groups have said that the clip was evidence of deep flaws in the secretive process of appointing judges. The clip was made in December 2001 but leaked in September 2007 by opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, who has refused to say how he obtained it. Mr Mahathir, 84, who appeared composed during his 90-minute testimony, said he didn't even know Mr Lingam personally until recently when he hired the lawyer to fight a defamation case against Mr Anwar. He also disputed claims by the man in the video who is heard saying that he, business tycoon Vincent Tan and then deputy minister Tengku Adnan Mansor had contacted Mr Mahathir regarding judicial appointments.

Answer: No

'No,' Mr Mahathir, dressed in a gray suit and blue tie, said repeatedly when asked if the three men had a hand in the appointments. In the clip, the man who looks like Mr Lingam is seen and heard speaking on his mobile phone and identifying the person on the other end as Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim, Malaysia's No. 3 judge in 2001. The man talks about how he allegedly helped Ahmad Fairuz get appointed and discusses plans to elevate him further with the help of Tan and Tengku Adnan. A number of other judges are also named during the conversation. In the Malaysian system, the country's chief judge recommends candidates for senior judicial appointments and promotions to the prime minister who can accept or reject those names.

Word of mouth

The prime minister then recommends the candidates for final approval by Malaysian state rulers, which is considered a formality. Mr Mahathir acknowledged, however, that he is a close friend of Mr Tan, who has been Mr Lingam's client in several high profile cases. 'I have had a relationship with him (Tan) for many years,' Mr Mahathir said. 'I know him very well .... we were I would say friends,' he said. Asked whether he might have sought or obtained advice from Mr Tan on judicial appointments, Mr Mahathir said: 'It could be. But he clarified that he receives opinions from many people including government officials, experts and members of the public regarding judicial appointments. – AP

= = == = ==2008/01/17

Tengku Adnan claims person in video clip drunk

By : V. Anbalagan; NST; KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 17:

Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor has denied any links in the appointment of judges although lawyer Datuk V. K. Lingam mentioned the minister’s name 11 times in a video clip. “I think the person who is engaged in a conversation in the clip is drunk,” he said when dismissing one of the statements read out from a written transcript by Datuk Azmi Ariffin who is assisting in the inquiry. The Tourism Minister, who appeared before the Royal Commission, said he knew Lingam and tycoon Tan Sri Vincent Tan, the other person Lingam kept referring in the conversation with an unidentified caller. “I knew them when I was in business. I had little contact with them after I joined the government,” said Tengku Adnan, who was deputy minister and later Minister in the Prime Minster’s Department between 2001 and 2002.

Azmi: Do you know Lingam?
Tengku Adnan: Yes, I know Lingam in the course of my business dealings.
Azmi: What was your relationship with Tan?
Tengku Adnan: I know him since the 1990s when doing business.

The 14-minute clip purportedly showed Lingam brokering judicial appointments with the unidentified caller. However, businessman Loh Mui Fah told the commission on Tuesday that Lingam had told him that the caller was the then Chief Judge of Malaya Datuk Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim.

Tengku Adnan said he first viewed an eight-minute clip in YouTube, a website where one could view and post video recordings, in Penang last year. He said he was then aware that his name was mentioned in the clip. Azmi then sought permission from the commission to play the 14-minute video clip to determine if that was the footage he viewed in Penang.

Azmi: Is this the same clip that your views earlier?

Tengku Adnan: I had only viewed the first part that lasted eight minutes. This is the first time I am seeing the second part which lasted six minutes.

He also identified the man in the clip as Lingam. Azmi then showed the transcript on Lingam’s conversation in the 14-minute clip and referred to Tengku Adnan to statements where Lingam referred the minister’s name on 11 occasions. It was on the ninth question by Azmi that Tengku Adnan uttered that Lingam could be in a state of intoxication. Tengku Adnan also dismissed Azmi’s suggestion that he had influenced former Prime Minister (now Tun) Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad in appointing Ahmad Fairuz as Chief Judge of Malaya and Court of Appeal president between 2001 and 2002. He also said it was untrue that he had discussed with Liingam and Tan on the appointment of judges.
Azmii: Do you think what Lingam said in the clip was true after viewing the clip?

Tengku Adnan: No.

= = == = = == = == January 17, 2008 19:14 PM

"I Don't Have To Explain Why," Says Dr Mahathir

ABOVE: Dr Mahathir arriving at the Jalan Duta Court Complex at about 10.00 am and BELOW: being ushered in

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 17 (Bernama) -- Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was queried today by a royal commission of inquiry on his decision to reject a former chief justice's recommendation to appoint the late Tan Sri Abdul Malek Ahmad as the Chief Judge of Malaya (CJM). The 83-year-old former prime minister was asked to disclose his reasons for not accepting Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah's proposal nominating Abdul Malek for the post of CJM. Dr Mahathir replied thus: "Why I made the decision at that time is not something I tell people. It is my prerogative. The prerogative is with me to make the decision. I don't have to explain why." He also said that he could not remember Mohamed Dzaiddin recommending the appointment of Abdul Malek as CJM. Abdul Malek died of brain tumour on June 1 last year. Dr Mahathir, who took his oath in Bahasa Malaysia, testified for one hour and 20 minutes on the fourth day today of the inquiry into the "Lingam video clip" to verify the authenticity of a video clip which shows a senior lawyer apparently brokering the appointment of judges. Replying to the question posed by Malaysian Bar representative Christopher Leong on the selection of candidates for top positions,

Dr Mahathir said that after listening to and hearing what people said, he would form a conclusion before deciding. To Leong's question as to whether he could remember the main sources of the information he obtained, Dr Mahathir said he could not remember precisely but added that he remembered listening to public views and consulting the "Lord President" (now known as Chief Justice) and then he made the final decision on his own. He said he usually asked people who might know the person he (Dr Mahathir) had proposed for nomination for a top position, including civil servants. Dr Mahathir said the sources of the information he obtained pertaining to the suitability of a candidate would be at random and might include civil servants and that at times he might verbally question police or Anti-Corruption Agency personnel if he suspected something. He said he had to make sure that the candidate was the right one.

To another question, on whether businessman Tan Sri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun was one of the persons he obtained or sought information from, Dr Mahathir said he could be. Dr Mahathir was questioned on this matter as there existed a letter written by Mohamed Dzaiddin to him suggesting that Abdul Malek be appointed to the post of CJM. Mohamed Dzaiddin's counsel yesterday contended that the word "masih" (still) in the phrase "Sekiranya Datuk Seri masih tidak bersetuju dengan pencalonan Abdul Malek ..." (If Datuk Seri (Dr Mahathir) still does not agree with the nomination of Abdul Malek ...) implied that Abdul Malek had been earlier nominated for the CJM post. The commission also heard yesterday that it was Mohamed Dzaiddin's stand that Abdul Malek be nominated by him to hold the third highest ranking post in the judiciary before he selected former Chief Justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim to hold the CJM post in 2001. Dr Mahathir was also questioned on his decision to drop from a list the names of two lawyers for appointment as High Court judges in late 2001.

Dr Mahathir said he would take note of views from people on candidates for such posts during conversations and social functions even though he did not ask for feedback but added that he made the final decision. "I normally don't explain to anybody the reason why I reject them. I listen to people. I make my own decision," he said when replying to a question from Commissioner Datuk Mahadev Shankar on whether he discussed with Mohamed Dzaiddin the reasons for his rejection of the nomination of Abdul Malek as CJM. He said he also did not receive a specific memo recommending names from lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam but, in his capacity as the prime minister, he might have received letters from then Chief Justice Tun Eusoff Chin but he could not remember. He said he really could not remember whether he received a memo from Eusoff Chin recommending names after Eusoff Chin had retired. The person in the video clip is heard saying during the phone conversation that the names of Dr Andrew Chew and Zainudin Ismail had been rejected, the latter because he had criticised certain judicial appointments. Former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Samsudin Osman testified yesterday that the man in the video clip had knowledge of the details of a letter sent by Dr Mahathir to Mohamed Dzaiddin regarding nominations of High Court judges.

Samsudin had said he could not speculate as to how the person had got the information as such correspondence was classfied under official secrets which even ministers and deputy ministers had no access to. The five-member Royal Commission of Inquiry is headed by Tan Sri Haidar Mohd Noor. The other members are Tan Sri Steve Shim Lip Kiong, Datuk Mahadev Shankar, Puan Sri Zaitun Zawiyah Puteh and Professor Emeritus Datuk Dr Khoo Kay Kim.

= == = ==

January 17, 2008 12:54 PM

I Was Not Influenced To Pick Ahmad Fairuz For CJ Post, Says Dr M

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 17 (Bernama) -- Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today he was not influenced by anyone when he picked Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim to fill the three top posts in the judiciary. The 84-year-old former prime minister said it was his decision to opt for Ahmad Fairuz. "I listen to unofficial views during conversations or at social gatherings. I consider the views but the final decision is mine," he said when testifying in the royal commission of inquiry into the Lingam video clip. Dr Mahathir, who appeared calm and smiled at times, said the reasons for his decision are "something I don't tell people." "It is my prerogative. I don't have to explain why," Dr Mahathir said when fielding questions posed to him in the inquiry.

At the start of proceedings, Dr Mahathir's counsel Tengku Sofea Jewa (ABOVE Pic during Tunku's time, a niece of Tunku) told the inquiry her client wished to convey his assurance that he would give his fullest cooperation and response to the best of his ability to questions put to him. Responding to that, commission chaiman Tan Sri Haidar Mohamed Noor said it was his duty to conduct the inquiry and ensure the commissioners conduct the proceedings in a proper manner. Besides Tengku Sofea, Dr Mahathir is represented by Datuk Dr Yaakob Hussein Merican and Datuk N. Chandran. Earlier, Dr Mahathir, clad in a grey suit, entered the courtroom at 10.02am, accompanied by his three lawyers and several police officers. He bowed in respect to the inquiry panel members and smiled to the lawyers, journalists and the public in the gallery before taking his seat in the witness dock. Dr Mahathir's daughter, Marina, also attended the inquiry.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saya tidak ingat!

Saya tidak ingat!

Saya tidak ingat!

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tengku Adnan is right . . . Lingam must either be mad or drunk. Since it is clear he is not mad, he must be drunk . . . and drunk people do not imagine non-existent facts, they lose self-control and divulge confidential facts. . . Q.E.D.

Rooting for Truth!

12:14 PM  
Anonymous no-total-recall said...

Malaysia is a laughing stock to people of the world - ex-PM, ex-CJ, and current Minister all lied through their teeth. No guts to admit that they have no principle and they did things totally against the Constitution.

EC is a slime - How could this cheat be a judge? VKL and his family happened to be in the same plane, same hotel, and same van as ES and his family!! EC's arm and hand happened to land on VKL's broad and lovely shoulder!! What a joke and big lie!

Do they happen to share the same bank account?

1:56 AM  

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