OSA threat: Opposition Leader wants police to halt probe

While the Parliamentary Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang has urged the police to stop investigating us under the OSA, the Works Minister Samy Vellu said that we should be punished for disclosing the Litrak agreement.

Civil Rights groups Tenaganita and the Coalition for Freedom of Information also issued statements in solidarity and support with us.

  

Halt all OSA investigations

Media Statement by Parliamentary Opposition Leader and DAP MP for Ipoh Timur Lim Kit Siang

IGP should halt all OSA investigations until the police has received clear legal advice from the Attorney-General that the Litrak LDP concession agreement is protected by OSA

The Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Musa Hassan, should halt all Official Secrets Act (OSA) investigations against Opposition leaders, Ronnie Liu (DAP), Khalid Ibrahim and Tian Chua (PKR) until the police has received clear legal advice from the Attorney-General as the Public Prosecutor that the Litrak Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong (LDP) concession agreement is protected by OSA.

There are at least two major reasons why the Police should not be trigger-happy to launch OSA investigations, viz:

Firstly, undermining and even destroying the pledge of open, accountable, transparent and good governance which was the clarion pledge of Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi when he became the fifth Prime Minister and on the basis of which he won the landslide 91% parliamentary seats in the 2004 general election;

Secondly, to demonstrate that the police upholds the rule of law and has learnt the lessons from the Mohd Ezam Mohd Nor OSA case, where the Shah Alam High Court Judge K.N. Segara in April 2004 quashed Ezam’s conviction and two-year jail sentence by the Sessions Court and made the following statements:

• It was incumbent upon the prosecution to establish that the alleged documents divulged by Ezam were genuinely classified by an authorized government official as stated in section 2 of the OSA.

• Instead of calling witnesses to prove the important requirement, the prosecution chose to solely rely on the certificate issued under Section 16(A) of OSA by the then Attorney-General, the late Mohtar Abdullah on August 24, 2000 in proving that the reports were genuinely classified as official secrets. Section 16(A) stipulates that the certificate by an authorized government official that an official document is an official secret “shall be conclusive evidence…and shall not be questioned in any court on any grounds whatsoever”.

• Segara found Section 16(A) to be “meaningless, obnoxious, draconian and oppressive” – “void and inconsistent to Section 2 of the Act in the interpretation of official secrets”.

• The judge said Section 16(A) cannot exempt the prosecution’s burden to prove that the classification of any document as official secret was done in a proper manner as stated in the Act.

The first question that must be resolved is whether the document in question, the Litrak LDP concession agreement, is an “official secret” under the OSA, and when and how it became an “official secret’.

This is because after the Segara judgment in the Mohd Ezam case, the Police have no reason to launch investigations which is no different from police harassment and intimidation of Opposition leaders for their legitimate political activities to hold the government to accountability, transparency, integrity and good governance unless the Police are fully satisfied that the document concerned is an official secret as to fall under the OSA.

The Police should now know, if they had known before, that there are official documents which are not official secrets under the OSA.

The only authority the Police can rely on this matter is the Attorney-General, and this is why the Police must not initiate any OSA investigations in relation to any police report unless it has received advice from the AG that the document impugned was in fact an official secret to fall under the OSA.

Has the Police received such advice from the Attorney-General that the Litrak LDP concession is not only an official document but an official secret under OSA?

Can the Police launch investigations and go on a “fishing trip” to harass and intimidate Opposition leaders and social activists just because of a police report under the OSA, regardless of the document referred to is an official secret or not?

If the Police has not been advised by the Attorney-General that the OSA has come into play as the document impugned is an “official secret”, how could the police invoke powers under the OSA to initiate investigations, including Section 11 of the OSA to demand the production of documents?

Section 15(1) provides that no prosecution for an offense under the OSA shall be instituted except by or with the consent of the Public Prosecutor. This means that even in cases where there had been unauthorized disclosure of “official secret”, there are circumstances where prosecution is not warranted in the public interest.

It would be a total mockery of such protection given by OSA against capricious prosecution where official secrets are involved if the police are allowed to abuse their powers by launching investigations under the OSA when the police is not clear and has not been advised by the Attorney-General that the official document in question is an official secret under the OSA, as is the case with the Litrak LDP concession agreement.

Lim Kit Siang

总检察长未确认合约为机密
警方不应以官方机密法调查
■日期/Feb 02, 2007   ■时间/02:12:47 pm
■新闻/党团观点   ■作者/民主行动党
           
【党团文告/民主行动党(林吉祥)】在接到总检察长确认环城大道公司(Litrak)的白沙罗-蒲种蒲大道(LDP)特许经营合约受到《官方机密法令》保护的明确法律劝告之前,全国总警长慕沙哈山应停止所有以《1972年官方机密法令》调查在野党领袖,即刘天球(民主行动党)、卡立依布拉欣(Khalid Ibrahim)及蔡添强(人民公正党)的行动。

至少有两大理由足以说明警方必须停止随意援引官方机密法令展开调查行动:

一、 它破坏甚至摧毁首相阿都拉巴达威曾经承诺的开明、负责任、透明化与良好施政;这些承诺是阿都拉当初出任我国第五任首相及他在2004年大选时赢得91%国会议席的基础。

二、 警方应展现其维护法治,并且能够从莫哈末依占(Mohd Ezam)的官方机密法令案件中吸取教训。雪兰莪州莎亚南高庭法官KN斯卡拉(KN Segara)曾于2004年4月裁决,地庭对依占的两年监禁判决无效,并发表以下观点:

‧ 控方有义务证明,依占泄露的文件是真正被一名获授权的政府官员列为官方机密,正如《官方机密法令》第二条款所阐明一般。

‧ 控方不但没有传召证人证明这项重要规定,反而只是依据已故总检察长莫达阿都拉于2000年8月2日根据《官方机密法令》第16(A)条款发出的证书证明相关报告的确被列为官方机密。《官方机密法令》第16(A)条款明文规定,由一名获授权政府官员证明一份官方文件属於官方机密“必须是确定性的证据……必须不会在任何法庭上基於任何理由受到质疑的证据。”

‧ 《官方机密法令》第16(A)条款是“亳无意义、可憎、苛刻及具打压性”,“是无效的,并在诠释官方机密方面与该法令的第二条款前后矛盾。”

‧ 控方不能在第16(A)条款享有豁免,即控方有义务证明任何官方机密文件是根据该法令所规定方式归列。

必须解决的首个问题是,白蒲大道的特许经营合约是否是《官方机密法令》保护的“官方机密文件”,以及它在何时及如何成为一项“官方机密文件”。

这是因为随着斯卡拉对依占案件下判后,除非警方完全确定该文件属於《官方机密法令》保护的“官方机密”,要不然警方没有理由展开上述调查,因为这无异於警方骚扰与恐吓合法政治活动,既要求政府负责任、透明化、廉正与良好施政的合法政治活动。

如果警方过去知道,那么他们目前应了解,有些官方文件并不属於《官方机密法令》保护的官方机密文件。

警方目前唯一能够依赖的权威就是总检察长。除非警方接到总检察长的劝告,指受争议的文件的确是属於《官方机密法令》保护的官方机密文件,要不然警方不应就任何报案援引《官方机密法令》展开调查。

警方是否有接到总检察长的指示,既白蒲大道特许经营合约不仅是一份官方文件,同时也是《官方机密法令》保护的官方机密文件?

只因为有人作了一项关于《官方机密法令》的投报,警方就能在不理会该文件到底是不是属於官方机密,就展开调查,大肆骚扰及恐吓在野党领袖及社运人士?

如果警方未经总检察长的劝告,指此案抵触《官方机密法令》,以及该文件是“官方机密文件”,警方岂能动用《官方机密法令》赋予的权力调查,包括《官方机密法令》第11条款下赋予“要求出示有关文件”的权力?

第15(1)条款阐明,除非由或获得主控官同意,否则警方不能将《官方机密法令》的案件控上法庭。这意味着基于公眾利益,即使发生了某项在未经授权泄露“官方机密文件”,也不会有被提控的情况。

如果我们允许警方滥用权力,即在未经确定及未经总检察长证明该文件是《官方机密法令》保护的官方机密文件,就让警方援引《官方机密法令》展开调查,正如白蒲大道特许经营合约这个个案,那么官方机密法令提供的保护将因这些反复无常的提控而沦为笑柄。

促政府撤销对刘天球等人指控
民间组织:公布大道经营合约
■日期/Feb 02, 2007   ■时间/05:05:30 pm
■新闻/家国风云   ■作者/本刊郭华盈

 MerdekaReview.com

           

【本刊郭华盈撰述】全国《资讯自由法令》联盟National Coalition for Freedom of Information Act及“妇女力量”(Tenaganita)今天异口同声促请首相阿都拉撤销对卡立依布拉欣、刘天球、哈达蓝利与蔡添强公布白沙罗-大道Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong)特许经营合约的指控,并公布政府和所有高速公路公司签署的合约内容。

全国《资讯自由法令》联盟今天召开记者会,向首相兼国安部长阿都拉巴达威放话,共有十个民间团体支持及连署全国《资讯自由法令》联盟的声明,它们是:独立新闻中心(Centre for Independent Journalism)“2000宪章-国民醒觉运动Charter 2000-Aliran)、马来西亚人民之声(SUARAM)、反对水供私营化联盟(The Coalition Against Water Privatisation)、关怀民众组织(Group of Concerned CitizensGCC)、环球持续性监督组织(Monitoring Sustainability of Globalisation)、马来西亚回教祈祷会(Pertubuhan Jamaah Islah Malaysia)、维护媒体独立撰稿人联盟、马来西亚青年与学生民主运动以及社会传播中心(Pusat Komunikasi Masyarakat KOMAS)。

武吉安曼(Bukit Aman)警察总部刑事调查组助理警监拉惹柯巴(Rajakopal Arumugam)周三(131日)援引《1972年官方机密法令》(第88条文)发出传唤通知书(notice of summon),传召民主行动党非政府组织局主任刘天球、人民公正党总财政卡立依布拉欣(Khalid Ibrahim)及全国宣传主任蔡添强周一(25日)到武吉安曼警察总部接受调查。【点击:警方援引官方机密法令发通告 下周一传召反过路费涨价委员】

他们曾在今年14日召开记者会,揭露白蒲大道特许经营合约的内容,首次将大道特约经营合约摊开在人民面前。【点击:大道经营合约首度曝光 34年收费率签约时已敲定】

工程部长三美威鲁在去年1214日宣布包括白蒲大道在内的巴生谷五条高速公路过路费从今年一月一日起涨价,涨幅介于20%至60%不等,引起民间怨怼不满,迄今已经举行了多场反对过路费涨价的集会;在最近的一场集会,警方部署大批警力镇压,并逮捕21人。【点击:大道!大盗?系列报道】

废除官方机密法令

资讯自由法令

全国《资讯自由法令》联盟认为,从好几场抗议示威媒体刊登的读者来函中,都可以发现民众普遍不满大道过路费涨价。

即使民众呼吁政府施政透明及负责任,但是政府迟迟都无意发布它和大道公司签署特许经营合约。政府不止允许大道公司起价,还赔偿大道公司;民众有权知道政府到底签了什么样的合约,以及他们必须根据合约付出什么代价。

假使这些合约是凭着谋求公众利益的前提签署,政府应该公布详情。反之,合约公众利益,政府就应该采取行动确保这事情不会重演。唯有透过重新谈判,制维护公众利益的合约,民众才会相信政府的公信力。

他们促请政府收回大道过路费涨价之决策,公布所有大道特许经营合约内容,并废除1972年官方机密法令,改而资讯自由法令。

另一方面,另一个民间组织――妇女力量(Tenaganita――今天也批评警方援引《1972年官方机密法令》传召刘天球、卡立依布拉欣及蔡添强调查,违反了首相阿都拉良好与透明施政的承诺;这个妇女权利组织也促请政府公开它和大道公司的所有合约内容。

警方动作有政治动机

认为,警方凭藉马来西亚学生领袖联盟(Gabungan Pemimpin Mahasiswa Malaysia马来西亚回教学生联盟(Jaringan Pelajar Islam Se- Malaysia)的报案书传召上述三人的做法,一点都不令人意外,因为它显然含有政治动机。

这份由“妇女力量”总监艾琳费尔南德斯(Irene Fernandez署名的声明写道:它再次证明首相的言论只是泛泛之。国人无法相信对子民诚实的政府还可以谈论铲除贪污改革。使用大道的是普通民众,过路费涨价对他们影响深远政府,特别是工程部长不曾清楚解释涨价的原因。每天缴付大道过路费的民众有权知道合约内容,为什么制订这种条约,以及谁又从中受惠。

假使工程部或政府都无法回答这么简单的问题,什么才是良好施政?获得正确的资讯是消费人的基本权利。假使首相有决心铲除贪污,建立有诚信的好政府,就应该拒绝工程部长三美的建议,别援引官方机密法令对付上述三位政治人物。

妇女力量促请全国总警长慕沙哈山停止采用马来西亚学生领袖联盟与马来西亚回教学生联盟的报案书检举上述三人,因为这根本是浪费公共资源;反之,警方应该利用这些时间解决国内日益严重的犯罪案。

Samy: They must pay for disclosing secret toll deal
Soon Li Tsin- Malaysiakini
Feb 2, 07 2:39pm
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Leaders of opposition parties have been accused of making a ‘big drama’ out of  a toll concession agreement by Works Minister S Samy Vellu.Speaking at a press conference after officiating a textile shop in Kuala Lumpur this morning, he criticised the opposition leaders for revealing details of the document in public and blowing the matter out of proportion.“They take it, they exhibit it and they did a big drama with it […] without realising the consequences of it,” the minister said.

He reiterated that those who revealed the documents must be brought to justice.

“This is an agreement between the government and the concession company. And that has all been done with the requirements of the law.

“It is part of a government document which cannot be revealed. And they have revealed it and they will pay for it,” he stressed.

Four opposition leaders have been summoned to the Bukit Aman police headquarters on Monday under the draconian Official Secrets Act (OSA).

They are DAP NGO bureau head Ronnie Liu, PAS treasurer Dr Hatta Ramli, PKR treasurer Khalid Ibrahim and information chief Tian Chua.

Earlier this month, the quartet showed reporters a copy of a document pertaining to the agreement signed between the government and the concessionaire of the Damansara-Puchong Expressway.

The opposition argued that the 200-paged secret document showed the government had guaranteed profits to concessionaires at the expense of road users.

Following this, Samy Vellu has suggested to the cabinet that the attorney-general take action against those responsible for ‘stealing and exhibiting’ the toll concession agreements.

Those found guilty of violating the OSA are liable to a mandatory jail sentence of at least one year.

Should know consequences

The MIC president then took a swipe at Tian Chua calling him a ‘small boy’.

“Tian Chua and others have no right to reveal it. He’s like a small boy playing on the street. He’s a grown up man. He should know that it’s an official secret document, yet he revealed it.

“He knew the consequences of his action. So he has to face the consequences (now),” he said.

Chua had earlier told malaysiakini said they would adhere to the summon but he challenged the government’s decision to classify the document under OSA.

Yesterday, DAP said that people have a right to know about the contents of the toll concession agreement because they are taxpayers and highway users.

When asked to respond, Samy Vellu answered: “When the document is declared an official secret document, it is official secret document.

“Today they will do this, tomorrow they will take another secret document and reveal it. If one (person) reveal secret documents today without paying for it, everybody will do the same,” he said.

He added that the ministry has previously revealed documents relating to the North-South expressway to DAP in the past.

Meanwhile, Investigating officer ASP A Rajakopal from the Bukit Aman’s crime investigation department could not be reached for comment since yesterday.

According to the police summon signed by him earlier, the opposition leaders are required to hand over all documents or copies of documents related to the agreement between the government and Lingkaran Trans Kota Sdn Bhd (Litrak).

They were also reminded that failure to appear on Monday was an offence under Section 11 of the Act.

One Response to “OSA threat: Opposition Leader wants police to halt probe”

  1. sampalee Says:

    LKS is a leader of the rakyat.His reasoning is valid and well directed.The people must be fully aware that the rakyat is the actual boss of the police and do not allow evil umno to upsurge this power.The YDP Agong should intervene as the spokesperson for the rakyat and caution the police to behave.Dialogue with Pak-dah of evil umno is waste of time.The government as custadion of the power can be removed by the people if they failed in their duty.To make any headway,ALL opposition leaders should unite and combined the parties resources under them to battle the evil umno.

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