CJ tells critics of judiciary to read judgments before attacking decisions

·2-min read
Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 10 — Malaysians, particularly politicians, should read the judgments of cases before criticising judges over the decisions, said Chief Justice Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat.

Noting criticism of the Federal Court’s decision last month to uphold the conviction of former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, she said the reasons for doing so were clearly laid out in the written judgment.

“These comments attacking the court’s decision are only based on mere sentiments,” she reportedly said after attending the second National Litigation Conference 2022 in Kuala Lumpur.

According to Berita Harian, she said some of those attacking the judiciary appeared to not have read the judgments of the cases they were disputing.

Still others appeared to not understand the law related to those cases, which she said led to them issuing statements that were irrelevant.

The country’s most senior judge then reiterated her belief that the misguided criticism stemmed from failing to read and understand the judges’ rationale for their decisions..

“It can be said that all these are based on mere sentiments without any basis or understanding of the laws or the grounds for judgement itself.”

“They did not fully understand the court’s decision,” she said when asked to comment on the criticisms against the courts following the August 23 court decision to uphold Najib’s conviction and sentence of 12 years’ imprisonment along with a RM210 million fine.

In that matter, Tengku Maimun chaired a five-judge Federal Court panel that dismissed Najib’s final appeal against his SRC International Sdn Bhd graft conviction.

She told politicians and the public to read and understand the issue at hand, other than asking for explanation from experts before making any conclusions on a court decision.

“It is unfair if they jump to conclusions and issue statements without understanding and this will only lead to chaos,” she said, adding that it was wrong to criticise without basis or understanding.

She also thanked the Malaysian Bar for expressing its support for the judiciary after it came under attack over the decision and for its efforts to help clarify the matter to Malaysians.

Earlier, the Malaysian Bar had denounced the attacks, threats and criticisms hurled against the judiciary and Tengku Maimun over the decision.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani has also ordered the Criminal Investigation Department to investigate any threats made towards Tengku Maimun.