Art stumped by why M’sian Muslims enraged by burkini ban

Source: FMT News

Art Harun says Muslims in Malaysia subscribe to the rule of the majority and therefore cannot be angry by the ban since Christians are in the majority in France. PIc taken from FMT News

Art Harun says Muslims in Malaysia subscribe to the rule of the majority and therefore cannot be angry by the ban since Christians are in the majority in France. PIc taken from FMT News

PETALING JAYA: Lawyer and social activist Azhar Harun has questioned why Muslims in Malaysia are upset over the recent ban of the burkini in France since Muslims make up only a minority of the population there and Christians, the majority.

In a Facebook post where he deals with the subject of the burkini ban, Art, as he is popularly known, said although he himself was opposed to the ban on the grounds that it went against basic “universal human rights”, Malaysian Muslims have imposed their values on other people just as they have accused the French Government of doing now to the Muslims in France.

“It must be remembered however that there are many Muslims in Malaysia who have been preaching the imposition of their values on other people.

“Some Muslims even want to impose their version of Islamic teachings on non-Muslims,” he said, citing the ban of “sexy posters” by the Kelantan Government and calls for non-Muslims not to wear “sexy” clothes during Ramadhan as two such examples.

He said the prevailing argument was that majority rules i.e. that Muslims made up the majority population in Malaysia and therefore the minority had no other choice but to follow the will of the majority. Read more

Bersih: Amanah Youth leader’s sedition conviction against free speech

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Mohd Fakhrulrazi was sentenced to eight months’ jail by the Sessions Court here today for seditious remarks made at a #KitaLawan rally in February last year. — Picture by Choo Choy May

Mohd Fakhrulrazi was sentenced to eight months’ jail by the Sessions Court here today for seditious remarks made at a #KitaLawan rally in February last year. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — Bersih 2.0 condemned today the conviction of Amanah Youth vice-chief Mohd Fakhrulrazi Mohd Mokhtar as another step backwards for freedom of expression in the country.

In a statement by its steering committee, the electoral reform group said it deplored the conviction and that the sedition charge should not have been initiated in the first place.

“Fakhrulrazi’s conviction is another huge step backwards for freedom of expression in Malaysia.

“In the first place, the Attorney General should not have initiated the charged under the flawed Sedition Act.”

The group added that despite the 2015 amendment to the Sedition Act to repeal provisions to prosecute for criticisms towards the government and the administration, it was still the majority of sedition cases pursued since Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali took office.

“Besides Fakhrulrazi, eight other activists which includes Bersih 2.0 Chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah and Bersih 2.0 Manager Mandeep Singh were also charged for participating in the #KitaLawan rally last year,” the group said. Read more

Government appeals Teresa Kok’s RM350,000 win over ISA detention

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Sankara said Kok was 'quite disappointed', pointing out that the Court of Appeal had already taken the time to consider arguments from all parties to give a detailed judgment. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

Sankara said Kok was ‘quite disappointed’, pointing out that the Court of Appeal had already taken the time to consider arguments from all parties to give a detailed judgment. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — The federal government is challenging a court ruling ordering payment of RM350,000 in compensation to DAP MP Teresa Kok over her arrest and detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA), her lawyer said today.

Sankara Nair confirmed that the Attorney-General’s Chambers was not merely appealing against the Court of Appeal’s RM350,000 award, but was appealing against the “entire decision” last July which found the government liable for the opposition lawmaker’s wrongful arrest and detention in 2008 under the ISA that has since been abolished.

He confirmed that the AGC had filed its notice of motion seeking leave to appeal at the Federal Court and served it today on Kok’s lawyers.

“We will be prepared to defend the appeal because I think the law on it is very settled and the facts on it are not disputed,” he told Malay Mail Online when contacted today.

Sankara said his client was “quite disappointed”, pointing out that the Court of Appeal had already taken the time to consider arguments from all parties to give a detailed judgment.

“Since the decision is sound in my opinion with well thought-out and clear reasoning by the Court of Appeal, it would seem quite unfair for the AG’s Chambers to appeal,” he said.

The 30-day deadline for the government to appeal the July 26 decision by the Court of Appeal ends today. Read more

PM: Civil court will have precedence in interfaith divorces

Source: The Malay Mail Online

PUTRAJAYA, Aug 25 — The civil courts will have precedence in mediating divorce and child custody cases involving spouses who convert to Islam after marriage, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced today.

He said the government will table a Bill to amend the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976 in Parliament in October.

“I believe this is a just move that is in line with what Islam demands of us,” Najib said in his speech at the government’ Women’s Day Celebration here.

MORE TO COME Read more

No conflict as constitution grants AG sole prosecution powers, court told

Source: The Malay Mail Online

File photo shows a man walking past a 1MDB billboard in Kuala Lumpur. The U.S. Department of Justice filed lawsuits on Wednesday seeking to seize dozens of properties tied to Malaysian state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), saying that over $3.5 billion was misappropriated from the institution. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

File photo shows a man walking past a 1MDB billboard in Kuala Lumpur  — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — The choice to prosecute or not is granted solely to the Attorney-General (AG) under the Federal Constitution and cannot be challenged in court, lawyers for the government’s top legal officer asserted today.

There can be no conflict of interest for the AG as alleged by the Malaysian Bar when he acted in accordance to his constitutional role and decided not to pursue legal action after clearing the prime minister of any wrongdoing over an alleged transfer of funds from 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), according to senior federal counsel Amarjeet Singh.

“They are saying that he’s appointed Attorney-General [by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong] on the advice of the Prime Minister and therefore there’s a conflict of interest.

“We are saying there’s no conflict of interest on the grounds that Article 145(3) has committed in the hands of the Attorney-General the sole power exercisable at his discretion to institute or not to institute criminal proceedings.

“This power is his and his alone, so no conflict of interest,” he told reporters here after emerging from a lengthy five-hour-long hearing in chambers. Read more

Watch: Our “Ask Me” Series FBLive #2 with Steven Thiru, recorded on 25 August 2016

Jom Tanya Steven Thiru on FBLive #2.
Crucial answers to important questions.

This was a live broadcast, streamed via Facebook Live from HAKAM’s Facebook Page and recorded on 25 August 2016.

In this FBLive Session #2 broadcast, Mr Steven Thiru, President of the Malaysian Bar, answered your questions on a number of current Malaysian issues, especially on topics dealing with the administration of justice, the Federal Constitution, the concept of separation of powers, the role of the Malaysian Bar in defending human rights, as well as the role of the Malaysian Bar vis a vis various other institutions such as the Judiciary, Attorney General’s Chambers and law enforcement agencies in Malaysia and his thoughts on the legal profession in Malaysia.

Check out HAKAM FBLive sessions to come.

HAKAM thanks Mr Chacko Vadaketh for moderating this Facebook Live broadcast.

Read more

Chief of Defence Forces is new National Security Council director-general

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin has been appointed the director-general of the National Security Council. ― File pic

Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin has been appointed the director-general of the National Security Council. ― File pic

NEW YORK, Aug 25 ― Taking into account the severity of the threats to national security and defence, the Malaysian government has appointed a military officer as the director-general of the National Security Council, it was announced here yesterday.

Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who made the announcement, said Chief of Defence Forces Gen Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin has been appointed the first director-general of the council.

It is learnt that Zulkifeli’s appointment took effect on August 15. Up to now the council had a civilian occupying the post of secretary.

“In view of the threats to national security and defence, the government decided that a police or military officer should be in charge of the council,” Ahmad Zahid said at a dinner with officers and staff of the Malaysian Permanent Mission to the United Nations and government agencies operating in New York, at the mission office here.

He also said that more police and military officers with experience in national security and defence matters would be appointed to the council. Read more

Intellectual property in TPPA: Is it really a win-win? — Chew Phye Keat

Source: The Malay Mail Online

BY CHEW PHYE KEAT

TPPA-copyAUGUST 25 — When you walk past a Body Shop outlet, your nostrils would almost inevitably pick up the perfumed scents of the cosmetic shop.

What you might not be aware is that the aromas could soon be “trademarked,” allowing the cosmetics chain to protect its scents.

Such a scenario, where even sounds and smells are protected, is becoming increasingly likely amid global moves to enhance intellectual property (IP) protection.

This is especially so as several countries, including Malaysia, inch towards final ratification of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

The pact seeks to lower trade barriers and increase economic integration and engagement between like-minded countries: the United States, Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Vietnam and Peru.

While it has been signed by all 12 Pacific Rim countries, it is awaiting ratification by the member countries before it can be put into effect. Read more