Malaysiakini Letter

Mr PM, please answer my daughter

True Malaysian  |  Published:  |  Modified:

Dear Mr Prime Minister, I keep writing letters to you but you never seem to respond to them. Please sir, you are where you are because the rakyat chose you to represent them, so please respond and clarify our doubts.

My daughter asked me a simple question yesterday that I couldn’t answer. She asked, ‘Why did the PM put Anwar in jail?’ Immediately, a whole bunch of responses came to my mind but as I was about to answer, I realised she asked me why the PM put Anwar in jail and not the police.

I immediately pondered over a few points:

i. Anwar has been accused of sodomy but has not been convicted.

ii. Anwar was going home to have lunch with his family before proceeding to IPK as requested by the police.

iii. Anwar and his lawyer informed the police of this.

iv. Etc, etc, etc. We all know the rest.

So, Mr PM, how do I answer my daughter? My daughter then asked if the police can just come to our home, take me to the police station and keep me in one of their cells without any reason? Mr PM, she is a child and she is very frightened. She said that if this is possible, then we are living in a police state and our PM should not tell the leaders of the world that we are living in a democracy.

She asked me why you do not tell the truth so often, because some world leaders will believe what you say without verifying the facts, like the Australian PM when he said that Malaysia is a ‘vibrant and flourishing democracy’ and that the strength of democracy in Malaysia was a ‘great testament to the political wisdom of the people of this country’.

She asked me why Anwar Ibrahim is not accorded basic human rights? Why hasn’t he been allowed to see the police report made by his accuser?

Mr PM, if you think my daughter’s initial questions were difficult to answer, her follow-up questions were even more challenging for me. First she asked me if sodomy is a crime. With the limited knowledge I have in law, I told her that in Malaysia it is, but not in other countries as long as it is between two consenting adults.

However, I told her, I feel that in this case the accusation against Anwar is politically motivated, because if it did occur in the first place, obviously it happened between two consenting adults and should not have come out in public. Secondly, I find it quite unbelievable that a 61-year-old man with a bad back can forcibly sodomise a young healthy man aged 23.

Now here comes her tough question. She asked me, which is a more serious crime, ie, a brutal murder of a foreign citizen that has been proven to have occurred, or an alleged sodomy case that may or may not have occurred? Do you see Mr. PM, where she is heading? She’s a smart kid.

She said that if the brutal murder using C4 explosives to blow up a person is so cruel and has been proven to have happened, why weren’t all those linked to this heinous crime arrested by balaclava clad policemen and taken in for lengthy interrogation and kept in jail overnight and being made to sleep on the cold hard cement floor?

She added that a statutory declaration was made implicating your deputy Najib’s wife Rosmah, Colonel Aziz Buyong and Norhayati in that murder. I could not answer her question but she thought that I did not hear her. So she repeated her question to me, ‘Why weren’t these people arrested and put in jail while a man who has been accused of sodomy was arrested and put in jail?’

If sodomy is a bigger crime than brutal murder in Malaysia, then why aren’t the police arresting all gays and throwing them in jail, she asked? Why aren’t you and Syed Hamid Albar asking for DNA samples from all gays in Malaysia? She asked me if the reason could be because Anwar Ibrahim is a threat to Umno?

My daughter, being a smart kid, did not stop there. She must have been reading the various news articles without my knowledge because she then asked me which is more serious, the rape of a 14 year-old child or sex between two consenting adults? To this I was flabbergasted and asked her what she meant. She told me that when she was a small child sometime in the 90s, she remembers having read that the Malaysian police arrested and charged Lim Guan Eng after he publicly criticised the government's handling of allegations of statutory rape against the former chief minister of Malacca, Abdul Rahim Tamby Chik.

She said that the then attorney-general Mokhtar Abdullah had decided not to prosecute Rahim Tamby Chik, while the under-aged alleged victim, a 15-year old Muslim schoolgirl, was placed under 'protective custody'.

My daughter wants an answer to this too. She asked me why the attorney-general prosecuted Lim Guan Eng for highlighting this issue and even appealed to the courts to demand a jail sentence for Guan Eng. She is very confused Mr PM and I can’t help her here. I hope you can.

My daughter was so into it that she didn’t leave it at those questions. She asked me if a DNA sample can be planted to incriminate a person of a crime? This was her first easy question that I could answer. I told her that the Malaysian government has done this before. I told her that in the 1998-1999 trials, Anwar experienced the alleged fabrication of DNA evidence when DNA samples were said to have been illegally removed from forensic custody and later found on a mattress.

And when confronted with this fact the prosecution amended its charge and persuaded the judge, Augustine Paul (now promoted to federal court judge), to expunge the entire DNA evidence from the record, preventing Anwar Ibrahim’s lawyers from responding. She was shocked to hear this as she always believed you when you said that Malaysia is a truly democratic country. She is beginning to doubt you, Mr PM.

I also told her that the persons who were implicated in the alleged fabrication of evidence during Anwar’s former trials, namely the AG Gani Patail and IGP Musa Hassan are the same people who are involved in the current case. And today, they are in much more powerful positions within the law. She couldn’t believe what I was saying.

My daughter had also one comment on your recent statement that IGP Musa Hassan and AG Abdul Gani Patail would have no role in Anwar’s case and as such there was no reason to suspend them. To this, she asked how is it in a democratic country one man can decide who should be involved and who should not be involved in a legal investigation of such importance.

If the PM can take these two top men off a case, isn’t it just as possible that he might replace them with other men of his choice? It is difficult to answer all these questions that my daughter raises, Mr PM.

You see now why I need you to answer my daughter? She also asked a whole bunch of other questions especially about the humorous people you have around you, like Bung Mokhtar, Hishamudin Hussein Onn, Khairy Jamaludin, Syed Hamid Albar, etc, etc. But don’t worry about these questions as I can easily answer them.

I was then rather sad to hear her last comment, which went like this, "I will be eligible to vote in the next elections and if things remain the way they are, all my friends and I will vote for the opposition’, she said.

Don’t worry Mr PM, I will try to change her mind but I need your help to do it.

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