By Parliamentary Oppistion Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 12.1.1990.
DAP calls on the Prime Minister to suspend Tan Sri Abu Talib as Attorney-General and to establishment a Tribunal to impeach him for misconduct for directing or advising the destruction of the Vijandran pornographic videotapes
For the last two days, Malaysians of all races and classes, men and women, had been seized by a sense of moral outrage at the destruction of the Vijandran pornographic videotapes at the behest of the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abu Talib.
Tan Sri Abu Talib has come out with a second statement claiming that he did not order the destruction of the 11 videotapes and four envelopes of 2,000 photographs stolen from Vijandran’s house in August 1988. However, the Director of CID, Datuk Haji Zaman Khan Rahim, clearly stated on Wednesday that the tapes were destroyed on the directions of the Attorney-General. And the Inspector-General of the Police, Tan Sri Hann=iff Omar, said in today’s press:”They (Brickfields police) wouldn’t have done so, if they had no quthority. The Attorney-General is in a better position to answer these questions.”
What we see now is the Attorney-General and the Police competing to pass to the other added the public disgust at the Attorney-General and the Police trying to make each other responsible for the destruction of the videotapes.
The public moral outrage at the destruction of the videotapes and photographs are now added the public disgust at the Attorney-general and the police trying to make each other responsible for the destruction of the videotapes.
There is no doubt that both the Attorney-General and the Police must both be held responsible for the destruction of the videotapes. Tan Sri Abu Talib disclaim responsibilities by merely claiming that he only advised the Police to destroy the videotapes, for clearly when the Attorney-Generaladvised the Police, it is as good as an instruction. Similarly, when the Prime Minister ‘advised’ the police to do certain thing, isn’t this as good as an instruction?
Tan Sri Abu Talib has still to explain to the Malaysian public on what legal basis and authority he directed or advised the Police to destroy the videotapes, which has now hampered police investigations into new police reports lodged in connection with them.
From the statements made by the Attorney-General, the Inspector-General of Police and others, it is crystal clear that they are not only trying to pass the responsibility of the destruction of the videotapes, none of them could give the legal ground, basis or authority for the destruction of the videotapes. All that Tan Sri Haniff could say for instance is that the police would not have done so if they had no authority, but he could not cite the authority to justify the destruction. Probably, the authority of the Police for the destruction of the videotapes would be the Attorney-General, except that the Attorney-General is now disclaiming such authority!
Regarding the Vijandran tapes “As this is a free country” It is shocking that even now, the Attorney-General cannot see the enormity of the scandal of burning tapes. It has been said that power corrupts and absolute power in th hands of the Attorney-General had completely corrupted his moral values and basic sense of what is right and wrong. The whole country knows that the destruction of the videotapes is a heinous wrong, but Tan Sri Abu Talib thinks it is a virtuous right.
It is clear that Tan Sri Abu Talib is no more fit to hold the high office of Attorney-General, and the DAP calls for his removal. DAP calls on the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed, to immediately suspend Tan Sri Abu talib as Attorney-General, and form a Tribunal to impeach him.
Article 145(6) of the Constitution provides that the Attorney-General shall not be removed from office except on the like grounds and in the like manner as a Supreme Court Judge. Article 125(3) of the Constitution on the removal of a Supreme Court judge provided that “If the Prime Minister, or the Lord President after consulting the Prime Minister, representing to the Yang di Pertuan Agong that a judge of the Supreme Court ought to be removed on the ground of misbehavior or of inability, from infirmity of body or mind or any other cause, properly to discharge the functions of his office, the Yang di Pertuan Agong shall appoint a tribunal in accordance with Clause (4) and refer the representation to it; and may on the recommendation of the tribunal remove the judge from office.”
Article 145(4) provides for a tribunal of not less than five persons from those who had held high judicial office, either in Malaysia or in another Commonwealth country. The Attorney-General had been involved in the establishment of two such Tribunals in 1988 leading to the sacking of Lord President, Tun Salleh Abas and two Supreme Court judges, tan Sri Wan Suleiman and Datuk George Seah. It is only proper that he should summoned to appear before a similar Trin=bunal for his own sacking for his gross abuse of his prerogative as Attorney- General in the destruction of the videotapes and photographs.
The Vijnadran pornographic videotape scandal which started involving only one person, the Deputy Speaker, has now become an even bigger scandal involving the Attorney-General’s decision on burning the videotapes and photographs, and the stand of the Barsian Nasional government on the scandalous manner the Attorney-General has discharged his duties.
Legitimate questions are being asked by the public as to what faith and confidence they can have in the Attorney-General’s who could order or advise the destruction of the videotapes. If incriminating videotapes and photographs could be destroyed, why not other incriminating evidence, including dangerous drugs?
The DAP Central Executive Committee at its meeting in Petaling Jaya on Sunday will discuss this grave issue, and to consider what action could be taken to restore public confidence in the office of Attoney-General.