Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjong, Lim Kit Siang, at the Johore DAP State Committee meeting at DAP Taman Ungku Tun Aminah Branch on Sunday, July 26, 1992 at 4 p.m.
The right decision on the Vijandran pornographic videotape is for the Speaker to keep it in Parliamentary custody and allow it to be viewed by MPs in Parliament House on request
The country and the world must be astounded as to how the production of a Vijandran pornographic videotape had developed into a constitutional crisis on the proper relationship between Parliament and the Cabinet and whether the doctrine of Separation of Powers had been destroyed in the Malaysian system of government.
If the Cabinet had respected the principle of parliamentary sovereignty, the powers and privileges of MPs and the absolute right of Parliament to order its own affairs, there would be no constitutional crisis.
Unfortunately, the Cabinet last Wednesday threatened the fundamental principle of parliamentary sovereignty when after its meeting, the Deputy Prime Minister, Ghafar Baba, announced that the Vijandran pornographic videotape would be surrendered to the police.
The Cabinet, the Attorney-General and the Police have no right to interfere with Parliament’s unfettered right to decide what to do with the Vijandran pornographic videotape.
I have yesterday read the Hansards of the Parliamentary sittings from Monday to Thursday, and I find the Vijandran pornographic videotape a very simple matter if there are no attempts by the Cabinet to usurp the powers of Parliament and privileges of MPs.
Firstly, the Vijandran pornographic videotape presented by Karpal Singh had been accepted by Deputy Speaker, Ong Tee Kiat, and the question whether it should have been accepted or not does not arise anymore.
This is made very clear in the Hansard of Monday, 20th July 1992.
Thus the Hansard of 20th July 1192 gives the following extract:
“Tuan R. Karpal Singh: Tetapi apa yang perlu ialah seorang pengarah sekarang dan pengerusi dalam tahun 1986 – Pengerusi MIAKA Holdings ini sepatutnya dihadapkan ke mahkamah oleh kerana ada perlakuan dalam video-video lucah. Saya ada video itu [Tepuk] – [menyerahkan pita video kepada Tuan Yang di-Pertua] [Tepuk]. Tuan Speaker, video itu bolehkah itu menjadi exhibit dalam Hansard? [Tepuk]. Dalam video itu apa yang ada, Tuan Speaker?” – p.78.
And in page 83, the following extract:
“Timbalan Yang di-Pertua [Tuan Ong Tee Keat]: … Cuma saya hendak menasihatkan Yang Berhormat dari Jelutong kalaulah kita betul-betul hendak membahaskan Rang undang-undang yang dibentangkan ini, saya rasa eloklah balik pada tajuk, dan walaupun saya sudah terima pita ini di sini bagi pihak Kerusi, saya hendak nasihatkan Yang Berhormat khususnya Ahli-ahli lain yang mungkin hendak tahu apakah isi kandungnya, saya rasa ini bukan masanya…..”
And in page 87, the following:
“Timbalan Yang di-Pertua [Tuan Ong Tee Keat]: Yang Berhormat, tadi bila Yang Berhormay [ daripada Jelutong] menyerahkan pita ini kepada saya, mamanglah tindak-tanduk Yang Berhormat itu telah pun dimasukkan ke dalam Hansard…”
And in page 91,
“Tuan Karpal Singh: Itu diterima sebagai apa, exhibit?
“Timbalan Yang di-Pertua [Tuan Ong Tee Keat]: Yang Berhormat boleh menyerahkan sebarang notakah, ataupun pita seperti yang diserahkan.”
The acceptance of the Vijandran pornographic videotape by Deputy Speaker Ong Tee Kiat on behalf of the Chair is therefore conclusive and cannot be reviewed except through a substantive motion under Standing Order 43.
The Vijandran pornographic videotape should not be returned to Karpal Singh by the Speaker
I am surprised therefore that in his remarks in Dewan Rakyat as contained in the Hansard of July 23, 1992, Tan Sri Zahir was talking about the possibility of returning the Vijandran pornographic videotape to Karpal Singh as one of the options open to him.
The Speaker should not return the Vijandran pornographic videotape to Karpal Singh at all.
The decision is very simple. The right and proper decision is for the Speaker to keep the Vijandran pornographic videotape in the custody of Parliament and allowed it to be viewed by MPs in Parliament House on request.
The Vijandran pornographic videotape is not an ordinary videotape to titillate the prurient interests and desires of MPs, but to allow the MPs to make an informed decision on an issue which had greatly besmirched the reputation and dignity of Parliament and the nation.
Malaysia will become a laughing stock of the world if the Vijandran pornographic videotape is returned to Karpal Singh one week after it had been accepted by the Speaker
The Vijandran pornographic videotape should be kept in the custody of Parliament for one year, after which the MPs can decide by motion to turn it over to the Police, provided the Police can give an iron-clad guarantee that they will not destroy it in the manner they had destroyed eleven Vijandran pornographic videotapes, 2,000 photographs and negatives in 1989.
Alternatively, the MPs could by way of a motion authorise the making of a copy of the Vijandran pornographic videotape and make it available to the Police for its re-opening of the case of the Vijandran pornographic videotape scandal.
The Malaysian Parliament will become a laughing stock in the world if after a week of accepting the Vijandran pornographic videotape, the Speaker returns it to Karpal Singh on the ground that it had not been properly presented to the Chair.
As Ong Tee Kiat had made it very clear that he had accepted the Vijandran pornographic videotape on behalf of the Speaker, parliament should not go through a farce of passing the Vijandran pornographic videotape around.