I have sent urgent letters to the Law Minister, Datuk Syed Hamid Albar and the Speaker of Dewan Rakyat, Tan Sri Zahir Ismail, asking for the withdrawal of Syed Hamid’s motion to kick the ball in the Vijandran pornographic videotape case and pass it to the Police


by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjong, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, 29th July 1992:

I have sent urgent letters to the Law Minister, Datuk Syed Hamid Albar and the Speaker of Dewan Rakyat, Tan Sri Zahir Ismail, asking for the withdrawal of Syed Hamid’s motion to kick the ball in the Vijandran pornographic videotape case and pass it to the Police.

I have sent urgent letters to the Law Minister, Datuk Syed Hamid Albar and the Speaker of Dewan Rakyat, Tan Sri Zahir Ismail, asking for the withdrawal of Syed Hamid’s motion to kick the ball in the Vijandran pornographic videotape case and pass it to the Police.

Syed Hamid gave notice to table such a motion yesterday, and I am shocked to learn that it would take priority over all parliamentary business at 3.30 p.m. today and will become the first item of business ijn the Dewan Rakyat after question time, superseding all government bills and even the earlier motion submitted last week by the DAP Parliamentary Whip and MP for Kepong, Dr. Tan Seng Giaw on the same subject matter.

This is most improper and is another example of the abuse of the two-thirds parliamentary majority of the Barisan Nasional government to interfere with parliamentary business at its whims and fancy.

If the Dewan Rakyat is to deal with the issue of the Vijandran pornographic videotape presented to Parliament by DAP Deputy Chairman and MP for Jelutong, Sdr. Karpal Singh on 20th July 1992, then Dr. Tan Seng Giaw’s motion should take precedence as it was submitted before Syed Hamid.

As an MP for 23 years years, I am shocked by the motion submitted by the Law Minister.

Firstly, the Speaker, Tan Sri Syed Zahir Ismail, had made a ruling in the Dewan Rakyat last Thursday when rejecting the motion by Dr. Tan Seng Giaw to adjourn the House to discuss the Vijandran pornographic videotape as a matter of urgent, definite public importance that he, as Speaker, had the full powers to decide what to do with the Vijandran pornographic videotape.

This is what Tan Sri Zahir said last Thursday (Hansard 23.7.1992, p.37):

“Saya telah meneliti perkara ini dan saya dapati bahawa perkara ini perkara tertentu dan bagi kepentingan orang ramai, tetapi saya tidak bersetuju bahawa perkara ini perlu disegerakan. Ini adalah kenana saya sebagai Speaker belum lagi membuat apa-apa ruling berkenaan dengan perkara tape itu. Oleh sebab perkara ini adalah perkara yang baru yang tidak ada precedentnya, saya berkehendakkah sedikit masa untuk mengkaji dengan mendalam.”

And in page 42, Tan Sri Zahir said:

“Yang Berhormat, perkara ini di bawah Perkara 99, saya boleh membuat satu-satu ruling. Jikalau sekiranya saya membuat satu-satu ruling, jikalau sekiranya saya memutuskan pita ini sama ada dikembalikan kepada Ynag Berhormat dari Jelutong ataupun kepada siapa-siapa, maka saya akan menjalankan ruling itu melainkan jikalau sekiranya ada satu usul bawah Perkara 43 yang mengenepikan usul saya yang menyatakan usul saya itu tidak betul.”

The motion in the name of the Law Minister in fact overrules the ruling made by Tan Sri Zahir last last Thursday and shows the power of the Cabinet to undermine the principles of parliamentary sovereignty, the doctrine of the Separation of Powers, and to interfere with the unfettered right of Parliament to order its own business.

Syed Hamid’s motion subverts the principle of parliamentary sovereignty and the doctrine of separation of powers

The motion by the Law Minister is the follow-up to the Cabinet meeting last Wednesday, after which the Deputy Prime Minister, Ghafar Baba, announced that Parliament should surrender the Vijandran pornographic videotape to the police.

If Syed Hamid’s motion is not withdrawn, it would be the standing proof of the subversion of the principle of parliamentary sovereignty in Malaysia, as the erosion parliamentary democracy in Malaysia had become so serious that the Cabinet is openly dictating to Parliament what it should do, when it is Parliament which it should be the most supreme body in the land, higher than Cabinet.

But it is the contents of the motion of the Law Minister which will make the Malaysian Parliament the laughing stock in the world.

In his motion, Syed Hamid wanted the Vijandran pornographic videotape to be surrendered to the police on two grounds:

Firstly, that under Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution, the Attorney-General shall have the discretionary power to decide on prosecutions; and secondly that under Article 121(1) of the Federal Constitution, only the courts have the judicial power to try a criminal case.

Syed Hamid has completely got the wrong end of the stick and is propounding a dangerous political doctrine of democracy ala Malaysia which will emasculate further the constitutional role of Parliament.

Vijandran pornographic videotape is important not to establish his pornographic proclivities but to establish the scandal of the biggest political cover-up in Malaysian history involving major branches of government and going up to the Cabinet

The paramount issue before Parliament is not whether Vijandran had committed an offence, whether he should be prosecuted, or whether he would be found guilty.

These are properly matters to be decided by the Police, the Attorney-General and the Courts.

The paramount issue before Parliament is whether there had been a cover-up of a major political scandal, involving major branches of government, such as the Police, the Attorney-General, Cabinet Ministers and even the Prime Minister, when Parliament and the country had been deceived, the principles of political accountability and integrity flouted and even laws broken to effect such a political cover-up.

The Vijandran pornographic videotape is important not to establish the pornographic proclivities of Vijandran, who is no more an MP, but to establish that there had been the great political cover-up in Malaysian history, involving major branches of Government and going up all the way to the Cabinet, where Parliament and country were deceived, principles of political accountability and integrity violated and laws broken.

It is important that MPs be allowed to see the Vijandran pornographic videotape presented to Parliament by Sdr, Karpal Singh not to tittilate any prurient proclivities, but to establish whether there had been a great political scandal of a cover-up in the past three years, involving the august house of Parliament.

Such a scandal of a major political cover-up is not the proper subject of investigation by the Police, the Attorney-General or the Courts, and can only be dealt with by Parliament.

If Parliament passes the motion presented by the Law Minister, it will be a total abdication of responsibility by Parliament.

On the basis of the subversive theory behind the motion of the Law Minister, Parliament in Malaysia will never be able to establish any inquiry into political scandals in the country involving top political leaders and even MPs.

If this is the case, then the Malaysian Parliament must be the only Parliament in the world which has castrated itself.

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