Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The "Do As I Say Or You're Transferred" Problem

1. This is the common problem in Malaysia that many civil servants particularly those in the lower level echelons are facing. They are ordered to follow orders by their superiors at any costs, irregardless of questions and doubts that could arise from executing the orders. Failure to do is, according to those who walk the corridors of power as insubordination, being defined as refusal to obey orders from those above the level lawfully. However, the exemption of being insubordinate, by logic is when the person who is to execute the order finds something that is illogical about the order, against the factual reality, against their judgement and wrong on moral grounds.

2. This is the problem that also applies to the judiciary and the law. Judges who are handling cases in public vs government (regardless of which court they are) are faced with this scenario and the order of "do as I say or you're transferred". The order usually comes from the government of delivering a verdict of a win for the government at any costs. In any of those cases, it is likely that they will have to bend the law to their own whim to secure the verdict for BN. Refusal to do so means being transferred to maybe another court at the federal level or to another state.

3. If there is a verdict that goes against the Barisan Nasional, they would definitely appeal and set aside the order delivered by the judge. If the verdict is in favor of them, although it is factually wrong, any appeals by the other side would be (by high chance dismissed). This pattern has been seen clearly by people vs government cases like the Kampung Buah Pala case, the Zambry vs Nizar appeal, etc.. The Zambry vs Nizar case has a unique appeal for it has been a public knowledge that Najib Razak gave a directive to the judges to deliver a win verdict for UMNO. No second guesses there. It was anticipated.

4. This also happens to those lawyers working for the AG's chambers. They too are not spared from such problem and dilemma. One example was the then DPP who initially prosecuting in the Raja Petra sedition trial in Petaling Jaya. It was publicly known and figured that there is no way that Raja Petra could be convicted with such tampering of evidence. When Gani Patail was told of the outcome, he flew in rage and sent that DPP to cold storage - or in other words, transferred to another court. This has implied that he was not going to appease his political masters if the judge outcome swings to Pete's favor.

5. The police officers, particularly in the lower levels too are not spared from this charade. The six Statutory of Declarations by the police officers in Johor that handles the illegal rackets and numbering reveal a damning fact that they are pressured to obey the orders of superiors, although they knew that there is something morally and logically wrong of the order received. They get transferred for what is branded as insubordination. So do the police personnel who had to be called in for their duty and being ordered to deal and arrest with people are deemed unruly, first without asking questions. Although it is clear that people who protested but carried nothing offensive and violent like weapons, they are ordered to go high-hand against them. This was noted through some of the pictures from the Perak May 7 fiasco. They have no choice but to do it otherwise, they'd be branded as insubordination.

5. The real fault in this problem lies in the irrational and illogical decision making by the top brass. These actions give the impression that what they do are merely to impress and appease the political masters. Either they know or do not know that what they do in the law enforcement and judiciary is merely to assist the Barisan retain their hegemony, just as the United States against the world. Anything that is the opposition element to the Barisan Nasional is like considered as opposing, ala 'enemy of the state' style.

6. This concept is already seen and demonstrated in what is called as the Icke's theorem. It rings similarly to the Bush Ultimatum - "Either You're With Us or Against Us."

7. One thing we knew for sure is that the police force and the judiciary are split apart. They are some very good judges and good police officers who are morally against such illogical elements and orders. They wish to serve their best for their country without bending to the whims of those who run in power. But they knew that they are in risk facing the wrath of being transferred because of them refusing to follow the directive of the letter.

8. This is a dilemma for people who are in these profession including believers of truth. How should we solve this dilemma when we have the knowledge of what we're told to do is in conflict of the actual work ethics of the profession we are in?

9. The government's real weakness is reacting and being arrogant on the public relations side. What it means is that when a foreign newspaper or a video of such event unknown to the world (example, Bersih, May 7, Altantuya...) publishes it online for worldwide viewers to see, they would go into fury. One example is the remarks of Deputy Speaker Wan Junaidi Jaafar reacting over a news in Malaysia reporting by the AFP recently. As the result, their PR partner were called in to fix the damage, although it is the truth is the damaging thing! My guessing is that the government is still facing the fear perception and opinion that the Malaysian public will not be able to handle the truth as in the 70s until now. The perception has long gone.

10. Now back to the case of Anwar's sodomy II. The government wanted a guilty verdict. It is always the intention of Najib to bump off his rival at all costs, seeing Anwar as a threat to Rosmah and Najib and the Barisan Nasional. It is publicly known, via medical reports and doctors' testimony that the sodomy never happened at all. It was designed to take out two people. The idea of such thing is too fool the people around, who still take what is written in the newspapers of such things going on. But this case is not going to be a something that will help Najib, but will drag Najib more and more into trouble.

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