Ex-leaders can voice their opinions but not attack our laws


Umno veteran Rais Yatim says it is not right that the Sosma Act is open to attack by all and sundry.

(Free Malaysia Today) – Veteran political leaders of the country have a right to voice their opinions since Malaysia is a democratic country but should refrain from attacking the laws that govern the land, former cabinet minister Rais Yatim said today.

“They have the right to voice up (their opinions) for the wellbeing of the country as well as for the integrity of the political system,” he told reporters in reference to former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamed’s comments on the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (Sosma) being used on the prime minister’s critics.

However, Rais said the Act should not be open to attack by any individual as it was the Attorney-General’s right to invoke that provision as a preventative measure if the need arose.

“Sosma must not be disputed. Under the law, the authorities have the right to investigate any suspected individual as a preventative measure.

“The AG can choose to use investigation findings or the Penal Code. This is his absolute right,” Rais said.

Last month, former Umno Batu Kawan divisional vice-chief Khairuddin Abu Hassan and his lawyer Matthias Chang were arrested to facilitate investigations against them under Sosma, a move that received harsh criticism from many quarters, including Opposition politicians and former Barisan Nasional veteran leaders.

Earlier this week, both were charged with attempting to sabotage the country’s banking and financial system on account of lodging numerous reports on alleged financial wrongdoing at 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

Rais also acknowledged that the government was obligated to answer all accusations of abuse of power and corruption levelled against it in the past few months, but stressed that investigations must be wrapped-up first before that could happen.