Wednesday, February 13, 2008

MORE PICS – Day 16 RCI - Adjourned to Friday; commissioners needed time to hear applications to recuse Mahadev & Dr Khoo; Witnesses under pressure

MORE PICS – Day 16 RCI - Adjourned to Friday; Commissioners needed time to hear applications to recuse Mahadev & Dr Khoo; Witnesses Jayanti & Ramachandran under tremendous pressure- Lawyer appeal

There might be reasons to have Datuk Mahadev Shankar recuse from the Royal Commission of Inquiry by the lawyer for Eusoff Chin but it is difficult to fathom why on earth the lawyer for Lingam wants to have the Prof Khoo recuse himself. He was an Emeritus history professor and surely the history of the dark side of the courts goings on is not part of his research. Whatever, the gag order is on and we do not know the reasons for now.

The appeal for “hands off” on Jeyanti the ex-Secretary of Lingam was timely. After her detailed disclosures with very incriminating evidence (the red inked corrected draft judgment, the tickets and photos) it is not difficult to understand where the harassment is coming from. It is hope the RCI would take the bold step and make the necessary recommendation in its final report to have this gross injustice rectified and not hide under the excuse they go beyond the “terms of reference

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ABOVE: Jayanti came on Day 16 with lawyer & friend but did not testified

February 13, 2008 15:37 PM
Inquiry Postponed To Friday

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 13 (Bernama) -- The Royal Commission of Inquiry investigating into the controversial Lingam video clip has been postponed to Friday to enable the commissioners to go through two recusal applications to disqualify two commissioners.

The applications were filed yesterday by former Chief Justice Tun Eusoff Chin and lawyer Datuk V.K Lingam against commissioners Datuk Mahadev (ABOVE) Shankar and Prof Emeritus Datuk Dr Khoo (BELOW) Kay Khim.

Commission's chairman Tan Sri Haidar Mohamed Noor said the commissioners needed time to consider the two applications, filed by counsel Datuk Hazman Ahmad representing Eusoff and counsel R Thayalan representing Lingam. "We propose to adjourn until Feb 15 (Friday) to hear the application," he said. Hazman then seconded the postponement.

Counsel Yeoh Yang Poh, representing Malaysian Bar, however was of different views, saying that the inquiry should proceed today and that the two applications should be heard first. Haidar then said that it would be better for the commission to wait and decide on the applications before continuing to hear the witnesses' evidence. "We are of the view that they (applications) contained serious allegations. To be fair, give us time to consider and decide on the matter and to move from there on," he said. Haidar (BELOW) said it was not necessary for any individuals who were named in the applications to testify.

"If they feel they need to rebut, in our view, it is sufficient to file their statutory declaration and hopefully by Friday afternoon we can finish (our deliberation)... but it depends on the evidence," he said.

The commission was then informed by counsel R.S.N. Rayer that his client G. Jayanti (ABOVE) (Lingam's former secretary) was under tremendous pressure especially after her evidence was published in the media.

In another development, counsel Wee Choo Keong representing Lingam's younger brother V. K. Thirunama submitted his witness statement for the commission to consider whether it was necessary for him to take the witness stand.

On another matter counsel Datuk Muhammad Shafee (ABOVE, right)Abdullah representing Jayanti told the commission that it was not only Jayanti that was under tremendous pressure. His client and driver D Ramachandran (Lingam's former personal driver) was also under similar condition, he said. "Perhaps it is sufficient for me to request the counsels to advise their respective clients or their agents not to have contact with the two witnesses," he said. Haidar then informed that the gag order following the two recusal applications was still enforced until the applications were heard on Friday.

Lawyers apply to disqualify Mahadev, Khoo

R.Surenthira Kumar and S.Tamarai Chelvi

KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 13, 2008): The Royal Commission of Inquiry was adjourned to Friday (Feb 15) to allow two commissioners to delve into applications to disqualify them. Commission chairman Tan Sri Haidar Mohamed Noor said following the two applications for Datuk Mahadev Shankar and Prof Emeritus Datuk Dr Khoo Kay Kim to be recused, the duo needed time to consider them. “We can hear the application on Friday and move on from there, unless counsel agree we proceed with the hearing,” said Haidar. Lawyer Datuk Hazman Ahmad, who filed the application to recuse Mahadev Shankar on behalf of his client, former chief justice Tun Mohamed Eusoff Chin, agreed with Haidar’s suggestion.

Datuk V.K.Lingam’s lawyer, R. Thayalan, who filed the other application to recuse Khoo, also agreed with Haidar. Malaysian Bar representative Yeo Yang Poh said although they agreed with Haidar that they wanted the applications to get out of the way, the proceedings should continue until then. Haidar said it would be ideal if the applications were heard before the proceedings continued. Yeo then agreed with Haidar. Haidar said hopefully they could finish with the applications by Friday noon before continuing with the proceedings. “There are serious allegations and too many names are mentioned. If those named want to rebut the allegations they might have to be called as witnesses. However it will suffice if they file statutory declaration, but it also depends on the seriousness of the allegations,” said Haidar.

Lawyer R.S.N.Rayer who is representing Lingam’s former secretary G.Jayanthi said he is concerned over his client as she is under tremendous pressure following her revelatons and it appearing in the media. He suggested that she continue with her testimony and that he had a few more questions for her before she leaves the witness stand. However he agreed with Haidar’s call for an adjournment after the Commission chairman said the proceedings can continue immediately after a decision is made on the two recusal applications. Lawyer Wee Choo Keong tendered his witness statement for the Commission to consider calling him as a witness, much to Haidar’s surprise. Datuk Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, who is also expected to be called as a witness, also echoed the same sentiment as Rayer in connection with his concern for Jayanthi and his driver D.Ramachandran, who was Lingam’s ex-driver. “Attempts to get in touch with these two witnesses have been made in an inappropriate manner. Clients to be advised by their counsels not to make inappropriate moves surreptitiously,” said Muhammad Shafee. He did not name the parties whom he claimed had made the attempts to ‘discourage’ the two witnesses from giving evidence. Haidar said the gag order was still on and requested the media not to publish the details of the applications until it is heard on Friday.

Updated: 08:03PM Wed, 13 Feb 2008


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