Counsel for former EC members contemplating suing A-G

28 Jan 2019 / 17:43 H.

KLANG: The panel of lawyers representing the four former Election Commission (EC) members being investigated by the Election Tribunal for alleged misconduct during the handling of the 14th General Election (GE14) are contemplating suing Attorney General Tommy Thomas.

Lawyer Mohd Khairul Azam Abdul Aziz (pix) said this was because they were of the view that there was no need for the tribunal since Thomas was aware that their clients had submiited their resignations last November and the resignations took effect on Jan 1.

He said they felt that the setting up of the tribunal was a waste of the government’s money.

“The chairman of the tribunal said there were two terms of reference, to identify if there is any act of misconduct and to remove them from the EC. However, in this matter, my clients have all resigned and both the terms of reference are not applicable.

“The situation would be different if the tribuinal were to sit before Jan 1. The objective of this tribunal is only one, which is to terminate their service, but people who have resigned cannot be sacked. This is common sense,” he told reporters after the tribunal sitting at the Klang Court complex today.

He said even if their clients were still EC members, they had immunity, as provided under Section 6 of the EC Act, from being charged in court for misconduct, unless the case was raised through a tribunal like this.

Mohd Khairul Azam said the AG had erred in calling for the tribunal.

At the tribunal sitting, Mohd Khairul Azam and the two other lawyers – Datuk Shaharudin Ali and Datuk Syed Azimal Amir Syed Abu Bakar – represented Tan Sri Othman Mahmood, Datuk Abdul Aziz Khalidin, Datuk Md Yusop Mansor and Datuk Sulaiman Narawi.

The other two former EC members are Datuk K. Bala Singam and Datuk Leo Chong Cheong.

The members of the tribunal are retired judges of the Federal Court, namely Tan Sri Amar Steve Shim Lip Kiong, who is chairing the tribunal, Tan Sri Zaleha Zahari, Tan Sri Suriyadi Halim Omar, Tan Sri Jeffrey Tan Kok Wha and Datuk Dr Prasad Sandosham Abraham.

They were appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong in accordance with Articles 114(3), 125(3) and 125(4) of the Federal Constitution. — Bernama

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