Anwar’s lawyers walk out of court during proceeding of Qazaf Appeal

(Bernama) – An altercation broke out during the proceeding of Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s appeal over his “qazaf” (criminal defamation) application in the Syariah Appeal Court today when his lawyers walked out of the court room.

This led lead counsel for the plaintiffs, Roslizam Rahim, to apply to the court for Anwar’s lawyers to show cause why they should not be cite for contempt of court for walking out of the court proceedings.

The plaintiffs are Federal Territory Syariah Chief Prosecutor Shamsuddin Hussain, Islamic Religious Department (Jawi) director Datuk Che Mat Che Ali and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Jamil Khir Baharom.

Anwar’s four lawyers, led by Kamar Ainiah Kamaruzaman, walked out of the court room in protest of a court decision that the plaintiffs needed not obtain leave in seeking to strike out Anwar’s appeal application.

Prior to that, Kamar Ainiah requested that Shamsuddin, Che Mat and Jamil Khir applied for leave to set aside the appeal notice filed by Anwar against the High Court decision in striking out the qazaf application he made against his personal aide, Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

However, a three-member bench headed by Justice Datuk Zohdi Toha, dismissed Kamar Ainiah’s application on ground that Shamsuddin, Che Mat and Jamil Khir needed not apply for leave because it was irrelevant and a waste.

The other judges were Justice Datuk Aidi Moktar and Justice Datuk Hussin Hasan.

Following this, Kamar Ainiah and Anwar’s three other lawyers, packed their files and left the court room.

While leaving the court room, Kamar Ainiah took a swipe at the plaintiffs’ lawyers, saying “let them continue with the proceedings. They can have the tithe money”.

However, Kamar Ainiah retracted her words when asked to do so by Roslizam.

Zohdi then set March 8 for the proceedings to continue, but did not make any decision as to when the court would hear the “show-cause” application.

On April 23, 2010, Anwar filed an appeal against a Syariah High Court decision in rejecting his application to get the syarie prosecution to commence qazaf proceeding against Mohd Saiful, 26.