PENANG: May 17, 2008 By K. KASTURI DEWI
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has called for an immediate review of cases, which had been decided by former Chief Justices Tun Eusoff Chin and Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim. He said the review would be the most appropriate redress or remedy to restore the independence and integrity of the country's judiciary and to uphold the rule of law.
Lim said the focus of the probe, if the Attorney-General (AG) ordered for one, should be mainly on Eusoff and Ahmad Fairuz because as judges, they carried a higher responsibility.
He said he was one of those affected by the decisions made by these judges, referring to his 18-month jail term for sedition in 1998 and publishing false news for complaining that the AG did not prosecute former Malacca chief minister Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Tamby Chik for alleged statutory rape.
Lim was asked to comment on the findings of the Royal Commission of Inquiry, which held there was evidence that lawyer Datuk V.K. Lingam, tycoon Tan Sri Vincent Tan, Umno secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Manson, Eusoff, Ahmad Fairuz and former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad were involved in a conspiracy to manipulate the appointment of judges.
On Friday, the Cabinet directed the AG's Chambers to institute immediate investigations into all allegations against the individuals identified in the report.
Lim said people whose lives had been affected by the decisions made Eusoff and Ahmad Fairuz had the right to demand for the cases to be reviewed.
"Justice must not only be seen to be done but in this case, justice has to be done,'' he told reporters after presenting rice aid to 2,013 welfare aid recipients at the Caring Society Complex Saturday.
The state also distributed free rice to 1,149 recipients at the Southwest district office, 1,333 at the North Seberang Prai district welfare office, 1,809 at Dewan Yayasan Aman SMK Penanti in Bukit Mertajam in Central Seberang Prai and 1,338 at Dewan Serbaguna Jawi in South Seberang Prai.
The state had allocated RM130,000 for the programme and had purchased the rice at a lower price of RM16 per sack.