Pakatan pleads for stop to inquest, seeks meeting with King

By Wong Choon Mei, Suara Keadilan

Pakatan Rakyat made an eleventh hour appeal for Wednesday’s inquest into the death of Selangor political officer Teoh Beng Hock to be stopped while they seek an audience with the King to plead  for a full-scale Royal Commission of Inquiry into the suspicious circumstances that caused his demise.

“We have decided for the Pakatan Rakyat leadership council to seek an audience with the Yang DiPertuan Agong on the issue of the Royal Commission of Inquiry,” Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim told reporters on Tuesday.

“We do not want the institution of the monarchy to be exploited in the formation of the commission when it does not fulfill the intended objectives of seeking justice.”

Huge loss in public confidence for the federal institutions

Amid a huge public outcry, Prime Minister Najib Razak agreed last week to set up an RCI but he only empowered it to review the interrogation methods used by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission against Beng Hock.

To look into the cause of Beng Hock’s death, Najib ordered a separate inquest by a coroner’s court, which is seen by many as being more likely to be swayed by his administration compared to an independent RCI which can target the truth without being pressured by political considerations.

Said DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang: “I hope tomorrow’s inquest is stopped and the Cabinet will accede to the request of the people and Teoh’s family, so the Royal Commission can investigate the cause and circumstances of Teoh’s death.”

The 30-year old Beng Hock was called in for questioning as a witness into an MACC probe into alleged misuse of state funds by several Pakatan assemblymen including his boss Ean Yong, the Seri Kembangan assemblyman and state executive councillor.

But Beng Hock never left the 14th floor MACC office alive again and his body was found the next day on the 5th floor podium of an adjoining building.

PAS president Hadi Awang stressed that the people would only be satisfied if the RCI was empowered to investigate what caused Beng Hock’s death. Credibility was a key factor, he added.

“This is a high-profile case and we want a Royal Commission of inquiry. We do not trust investigations by the police,” the leader said.