Mohamed Hanipa Maidin
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Many have heard ad nauseam Umno’s version of the true nature of the Federal Court’s decisions on April 16, 2009, proclaiming that Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir and his six exco members CAN NOW enter the Perak Assembly without any hassle.
But what are the CORE truths of the Federal Court’s decisions (which) have been conveniently buried by Umno?
- Out of 10 court orders sought by Zambry and his six exco members, ONLY TWO orders were granted by the Federal Court. I dare to say that these two orders are ineffective and inconsequential in nature. They are NOT , in any manner, capable of reining in the speaker’s power.
They merely declared that V. Sivakumar’s decisions on Feb 18, 2009 was null and void. These orders will be met by the following response by Sivakumar : “So what” ?
- Federal Court did NOT grant the other EIGHT orders prayed for by Zambry and his six exco members in their summons against Sivakumar. These eight orders have been hidden from the public knowledge.
- Despite the (Federal) Court (has) REFUSED d to grant a declaratory order allowing Zambry and the six exco members to attend and participate in all of the proceedings in the Assembly.
Without this crucial court’s order, (how could) Zambry’s lawyers have formed an opinion that Zambry et al could enter the Assembly without any legal impediments blocking their entry?
- The Federal Court DECLINED to grant an order declaring that the act of Sivakumar in suspending and prohibiting Zambry and his six exco members from attending the Assembly was contrary to law.
- The Federal Court REJECTED a declaratory relief which says that the Perak State Assembly was not bound by Sivakumar’s decision in suspending Zambry and his six exco members.
- ByNOT granting ALL the 10 orders sought by Zambry et al, the Federal Court implicitly acknowledged the doctrine of trias politica ( the French term of separation of powers ) that is the Speaker IS STILL the FINAL arbiter as far as the internal affairs of the State Legislative Assembly are concerned.
- Notwithstanding Umno’s attempts to have the sitting under the tree declared invalid by the court, this too was also NOT t entertained by (the Federal Court).
Thus NO declaration has been made to date by the court that such a sitting was invalid. It follows therefore that the sitting was valid until proven otherwise..
- Nizar’s suit against Zambry has NOTHING to do with Zambry’s suit against Sivakumar. The two suits are poles apart.
Thus a suggestion by Umno’s lawyer, Datuk Hafarizam, that Nizar should consider withdrawing his suit against Zambry, was clearly a preposterous proposition unsupported by any legal foundation.
- Lastly, by filing the suit against the speaker, Zambry and his six Exco members have allegedly infringed Section 10 of the Legislative Assembly ( Privileges ) Enactment of Perak 1959, in that they had given evidence OUTSIDE the Assembly in respect of the contents of documents laid before the Assembly or any committee WITHOUT special leave of the Assembly.
Whether such an act by Zambry et al was tantamount to abuse of their privileges and whether such an abuse may attract a new sanction by the Speaker remains to be seen.
In the circumstances, the court deserves a bit of respect for at least exhibiting judicial minimalism when confronted with the issue of questioning the speaker’s powers.
The decision would, of course, be for the court to follow, thus creating certainty, the stare decisis ( the past judicial precedents).
There are at least FIVE judgments of the Malaysian courts, given by judges of impeccable integrity, which in unison held that any decision by the speaker or legislative body would not be amenable to judicial intervention.
SIVAKUMAR MASIH DIBENARKAN MENCABAR KEPUTUSAN SPR KE ATAS TIGA ADUN YANG MELOMPAT
Mohamed Hanipa Maidin
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Ramai ingin mengetahui sama ada keputusan Mahkamah Persekutuan semalam yang memutuskan bahawa SPR mempunyai kuasa menentukan status tiga bekas ADUN Pakatan Rakyat ( PR ) yang melompat iaitu Hee Yit Foong (Jelapang), Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) and Mohd Osman Mohd Jailu (Changkat Jering) menandakan berakhirnya isu status ketiga-tiga ADUN tersebut ?
Sebelum saya menjawab soalan tersebut di atas saya ingin berkongsi dengan para pembaca tentang intisari keputusan Mahkamah Persekutuan yang diberikan semalam ( 9/4/2009 ) .
Keputusan tersebut boleh disimpulkan seperti berikut :-
- Pada 9/4/2009 Mahkamah Persekutuan SEKADAR mengisytiharkan bahawa SPR dan bukannya Speaker mempunyai kuasa untuk menentukan sama ada sesuatu kerusi seseorang ADUN sepertimana tiga kerusi ADUN Perak tersebut kosong atau tidak.
- Memandangkan Mahkamah Persekutuan memutuskan bahawa kuasa untuk menentukan sama ada sesuatu kerusi seseorang ADUN di Perak kosong atau tidak adalah di tangan SPR maka SPR berhak menentukan tentang status tiga kerusi ADUN tersebut .
- Memandangkan SPR telah membuat keputusan bahawa tiga kerusi ADUN tersebut tidak kosong maka Mahkamah memutuskan bahawa ketiga-tiga ADUN tersebut adalah kekal sebagai ADUN .
Jawapan kepada soalan di atas adalah status ketiga-tiga ADUN tersebut masih boleh dipertikaikan disebabkan alasan-alasan berikut :-
- Apabila Mahkamah Persekutuan memutuskan bahawa SPR mempunyai kuasa menentukan sama ada sesuatu kerusi DUN kosong atau tidak , Mahkamah Persekutuan sekadar memutuskan pihak mana yang berkuasa ( SPR atau Speaker ) bagi menentukan kekosongan sesuatu kerusi DUN. Itu sahaja. Tidak lebih dari itu.
- Mahkamah Persekutuan bagaimanapun TIDAK MEMUTUSKAN sama ada keputusan SPR ke atas status tiga ADUN tersebut sah atau tidak sah di sisi undang-undang ?
- Isu sah atau tidak sah keputusan SPR masih boleh dicabar di Mahkamah melalui permohonan semakan kehakiman ( judicial review ) .
- Mahkamah Persekutuan sendiri mengesahkan bahawa keputusan Mahkamah semalam tidak memprejudiskan Saman ( Semakan Kehakiman ) yang dikemukakan oleh Sivakumar ke atas SPR di Mahkamah Tinggi Kuala Lumpur bagi mencabar keputusan SPR yang tidak mahu mengadakan pilihanraya kecil bagi ketiga-tiga DUN yang berkaitan.
- Oleh yang demikian keputusan Mahkamah Persekutuan semalam tidak sama sekali menghalang Sivakumar untuk meneruskan saman beliau ke atas SPR yang telah ditetapkan untuk pendengaran pada bulan Mei 2009 ini.
- Jika kita boleh membuat satu analogi ( qiyas ) keputusan Mahkamah Persekutuan semalam ia bolehlah diibaratkan seperti berikut :-
Hanya kerana seseorang suami diberikan kuasa untuk menceraikan isteri tidak bermakna sebarang keputusan cerai yang dibuat oleh suami adalah sah dan tidak boleh dipertikaikan di Mahkamah.
Jika misalnya sisuami membuat keputusan menceraikan isterinya di dalam keadaan mabuk atau dalam keadaan tidak waras atau di dalam keadaan dipaksa oleh pihak ketiga , Mahkamah masih boleh membenarkan isteri mencabar keputusan suami tersebut.
- Begitulah juga keadaan di dalam kes ini, Hanya kerana SPR mempunyai kuasa menentukan sama ada kerusi tiga ADUN Perak tersebut kosong atau tidak , ia tidak bermakna keputusan SPR tersebut adalah sah dan tidak boleh dicabar di Mahkamah. Dari segi undang-undang , Mahkamah masih boleh menyemak keputusan SPR tersebut bagi menentukan sama ada keputusan tersebut dibuat mengikut proses dan lunas undang-undang dan prinsip keadilan .
- Sehingga Mahkamah Tinggi Kuala Lumpur membuat keputusan terhadap saman yang dikemukakan oleh Sivakumar ke atas SPR , maka keputusan SPR masih BELUM boleh dikatakan secara muktamad sah dan mengikut lunas undang-undang.
Jawapannya, Sivakumar masih BOLEH menghalang kerana Mahkamah Persekutuan tidak membuat sebarang perintah melarang Sivakumar dari menahan ketiga-tiga ADUN tersebut dari masuk ke dewan DUN.
Peguam Umno juga tidak memohon kepada Mahkamah bagi mendapatkan perintah halangan tersebut.
Oleh itu Sivakumar tidak boleh dikatakan menghina Mahkamah jika selepas ini beliau menghalang ketiga-tiga ADUN tersebut masuk ke dalam dewan DUN.
Nampaknya sekali lagi keputusan Mahkamah tidak membantu UMNO menyekat kuasa V.Sivakumar – individu yang memeningkan Umno sejak krisis Perak dicetuskan oleh Umno.
Perak Crisis Remains Murky and Unresolved
Read here full article by Shannon Teoh
Perak’s political imbroglio has more twists and turns and is getting murkier as lawyers say the recent Federal Court’s decisions have NOT cleared the matter.
PAS legal advisor Mohamed Hanipa Maidin and other lawyers dispute media reports that say Barisan Nasional now has an “undisputed majority” in the Perak state assembly.
The banner headlines came following the Federal Court’s recent declaration that Speaker V. Sivakumar’s suspension of Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Zambry Abd Kadir and his six executive councillors was null and void.
Coupled with the apex court’s earlier ruling that it is the Election Commission (EC) and not the speaker that decides an electoral vacancy, many are concluding that BN now leads 31-28.
“The truth is that out of 10 court orders sought by Zambry and his six exco members, only two orders were granted by the Federal Court. I dare to say that these two orders are ineffective and inconsequential in nature. They are not, in any manner, capable of reining in the speaker’s power,” Hanipa wrote in his column in The Malaysian Insider today.
Other lawyers agree, saying it is either a very lazy analysis, or an attempt to pull the wool over the eyes of the masses and perhaps even a rewriting of history.
The fact is that all 10 assemblymen in question are not out of the woods yet.
In the case of Zambry and his exco, they are still WIHTOUT the right to attend the assembly.
Thee Federal Court decisions, assuming them to be legitimate rulings, do not mean that any of the 10 assemblymen in question are guaranteed a seat in the hastily called for May 7 sitting.
Status of the Three Turncoat Assemblymen
In the case of the three turncoat assemblymen who were declared to have resigned by Sivakumar, the Federal Court ONLY RULED that the EC decides on a vacancy. But Pakatan Rakyat can still ask the court to decide if the EC’s decision was right or wrong. Granted, until it files such a suit, the three will claim that there is no reason they should not be considered members of the House.
So fine, BN can place 24 assemblymen in the assembly on May 7.
Status of Zambry and the 6 Excos
In the case of the seven exco, which is the actual decider of majority, it is clear that they do NOT yet have legitimate licence to enter the assembly.
Just because the Federal Court decided that the suspension by the speaker was invalid does not mean that they can just waltz into the assembly.
- As several legal experts have opined, the decision was only a declaration and not a mandamus or injunction, which are court orders that force a party to do or refrain from doing something or a certiorari, which quashes an earlier decision or action.
This means that the court’s decision is merely an opinion or interpretation of the law, not an enforcible call to action on the speaker.
- Only two declarations sought by the applicants were granted, which were to declare the suspensions for Zambry and also his exco, null and void.
- The most pointed omission was the application to declare that Zambry and his exco have the right to attend and take part in all assembly meetings.
That the court did not rule definitely on this implies that it either does not know the answer to this or that the seven still, in fact, cannot attend.
Validity of the Assembly Under the Tree
During the Federal Court hearing, both legal teams argued whether the speaker’s decision could be considered as part of assembly proceedings, since it took place OUTSIDE the assembly and concerned the acceptance of appointments to the exco, which also took place outside the assembly.
But under the rain tree, the 27 PR assemblymen unanimously adopted the suspension of the entire exco, thereby making it part of assembly proceedings. As Speaker, Sivakumar cannot cast a vote.
So while the speaker’s suspension of the seven may not stand, who is to say the suspension by the assembly will not?
Legally speaking, the score now stands at 28-24 in PR’s favour. That’s for the record, even if it makes no difference to BN.
ALIRAN's Appeal to Chief Justice Zaki Azmi
Meanwhile, Penang-based social pressure group Aliran has asked Chief Justice Tan Sri Zaki Azmi to order the Federal Court to review its decision concerning the suspension of Zambry and his six executive councillors.
“The CJ cannot remain unconcerned and unperturbed over what has taken place. He has to play his role as the guardian of the judiciary and salvage its reputation and restore people’s confidence in the rule of law,” Aliran president P. Ramakrishnan said in a statement.