Thomas’ book shows Pakatan failed to live up to GE14 pledges, says Umno info chief

Thomas’ book shows Pakatan failed to live up to GE14 pledges, says Umno info chief

PETALING JAYA: The declassified report on former attorney general Tan Sri Tommy Thomas’ book My Story: Justice in the Wilderness has shown that the former Pakatan Harapan administration failed in its pledges in the 2018 general election, says Umno info chief Shahril Hamdan.

He said as the 15th General Election (GE15) approaches, Pakatan leaders are continuing to peddle similar slogans made in the previous general election.

“Apparently, they (Pakatan) are more clean, reformist, sincere and more ‘rakyat’. They accused Umno of wanting to win because they want to intervene in court cases,” said Shahril, while questioning whether Malaysians would still believe promises made by the Opposition.

ALSO READ: Special task force report on Thomas’ memoirs declassified, findings made public

Shahril also questioned whether Malaysians would still believe Pakatan leaders who pledged to jail certain politicians, if they managed to win Putrajaya again.

“This is not a struggle for the people, but rather a political struggle for revenge.

“They hate everything to do with Umno and Barisan Nasional and they are inciting the public to hate,” Shahril said in a Facebook post on Saturday (Oct 22).

At the same time, Shahril said the declassified report on Thomas’ autobiography had highlighted dubious appointments of top positions in the country’s judiciary.

ALSO READ: Task force identifies 19 issues in Tommy Thomas’ book

Shahril said the declassified report had shown that these appointments involved individuals agreed by Thomas and then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in a secret discussion.

The positions involved, said Shahril, were the Chief Justice, the Court of Appeal president, the Chief Judge of Malaya and the Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak.

“The names (involved) differed from the choice of the Judicial Appointment Commission.

“This goes against the law, specifically the Judicial Appointment Act. It was stressed in page 38 of the declassified report that a prime minister does not have any powers to appoint a judicial candidate for the courts above,” said Shahril.

According to Shahril, appointments presented to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong must be names proposed by the Judicial Appointment Commission.

“Not your own choice (of appointments) with the attorney general,” added Shahril.

He also said the declassified report had stressed that the attorney general isn’t a member of the Judicial Appointment Commission and therefore, he does not have any powers to propose names to be appointed to the prime minister.

“This is not an issue of questioning the integrity of judges appointed in 2018, and it’s far from questioning the legitimacy of the appointment by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong,” said Shahril.

On Sept 30, caretaker Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob directed an immediate investigation over Thomas’ allegations in the book about the judiciary, and among others.

The order came after the special task force into Thomas’ autobiography presented a report to ministers at the Cabinet meeting.

The Special Task Force, chaired by Sarawak Legal Adviser and former state attorney general Datuk Seri Fong Joo Chung, identified 19 important issues in the book that required the government’s attention.

Published last year, Thomas’ book was criticised by various quarters including the Attorney General’s Chambers and some politicians for allegedly containing elements of incitement, insults and defamation.

Thomas was appointed as the attorney general under the former Pakatan government in 2018, but resigned after the administration collapsed in February 2020.

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