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NST: Kamil Disputes Eusoffe's Version of Conversation
By Sujatani Poosparajah
15/6/2001 11:59 pm Fri
[Hakim Muhammad Kamil menyangkal cerita Eusoff Chin mengenai
perbualan talifon itu. Adalah tidak mungkin beliau salah faham atau
tersilap menafsir perbualan itu kerana ia "perkara enteng sahaja".
Hakim Kamil juga menafikan Eusoff mengungkit dua kes petisyen yang
serupa. Ia tidak disebut langsung kata beliau.
Selain itu Hakim Kamil menyangkal tuduhan Eusoff bahawa beliau agak
lambat menyelesaikan kes kerana Mahakamah Persektuan di bawah Eusoff
sendiri pernah lewat sehingga 30 bulan sedangkan kes Lukas cuma 5 bulan
sahaja - itu pun kerana beliau banyak berpindah tempat kerja. Sepatutnya
Eusoff menegur kes lain yg lebih teruk lagi seperti Keputusan Arifin Jaka.
Masalah lewat bukan kerana kelembapan Hakim Kamil tetapi akibat birokrasi
dan lembabnya kakitangan perkhidmatan awam walaupun ia satu permintaan
dari hakim kerajaan. Tanpa kerjasama sebaiknya kes akan menjadi panjang
dan berlarutan. Yang menariknya kenapa Ariffin Jaka begitu lambat sedangkan
kes yang diadilinya tidak serumit kes Lukas yang lebih panjang?
14 Jun 2001
Muhammad Kamil disputes Eusoffe Chin's version of Likas conversation
No misconstruing over a "very simple matter"
By Sujatani Poosparajah
High Court judge Datuk Muhammad Kamil Awang today disputed retired Chief
Justice Tun Mohd Eusoff Chin's version of their conversation about the
Likas election petition. He insisted that there was no question of him
miscontruing their conversation which took place two years ago because
it is a "very simple matter."
"He's entitled to his opinion," he told reporters in his chambers.
"That's what he said."
In his judgment delivered last Friday, Muhammad Kamil had alleged, that
a former top judge had called him to direct that the petition be struck
out without a hearing.
On Tuesday, Eusoff said he had telephoned the judge to ask him to
expedite the hearing of the petition, but never asked him to strike it
Eusoff said there could have been a misunderstanding because he had
brought up two earlier High Court decisions on the same point, in which
the petitions were struck out.
Muhammad Kamil, however, said Eusoff never brought up these two cases.
"He (Eusoff) never mentioned that ... because I'm directly under the
Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak.," he said. "Normally, the Chief
Justice speaks through the Chief Judge."
"He (Eusoff) never mentioned that ... because I'm directly under the Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak.," he said. "Normally, the Chief Justice speaks through the Chief Judge."
Q: So it's not normal for the Chief Justice to call you up?
A: It's not normal but he can. But normally he goes through the Chief
Judge. However, it's not wrong for him to call me. (But) he has got no
business to direct me. But he can go directly to me because he's the
boss, you see.
"Is it reasonable what he said, that he called me to tell me to speed up
the case? The case had not begun...it was at the stage of preliminary
"According to the report I read in the newspapers, he said he gave me
two cases. Those cases were the judgments of two High Court
judges, so the decisions were not binding," he said. "I'm free to make a
decision based on the facts of my case." Asked if it was Eusoff whom he
was referring to as the caller, Muhammad Kamil said: "He (Eusoff) said
it. I don't have to say it."
Muhammad Kamil also said Eusoff's suggestion that he was a slow worker
was untrue. "This election case was the longest (of my cases). I took about five
months to write the judgment because I was transferred from Kuching to
Kota Baru and then to Kuala Lumpur. I don't think that is a fair
statement. They should have looked at my record.
"This election case was the longest (of my cases). I took about five months to write the judgment because I was transferred from Kuching to Kota Baru and then to Kuala Lumpur. I don't think that is a fair statement. They should have looked at my record.
"The Federal Court took 30 months in one case ... I think when he
(Eusoff) says I'm slow, why doesn't he look in his own backyard?" he
Asked how he felt about this controversy happening when he was about to
retire on June 25, Muhammad Kamil said he didn't expect it to happen.
On Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Dr Rais Yatim's
comment that it was "abnormal for him to raise personal
problems in his judgment, he said the matter had been taken out of
"In my judgment, I said it had become a habit for government departments
not to respond to public letters and I know this from personal
experience," he said. "I wrote to the State Government and there's no
response. A judge writing to the State Government... and no response...?
Q: "So it's not abnormal?"
A: "It is not abnormal. Judges in England and elsewhere do that..."
In that portion at the end of his 29-page judgment, Muhammad Kamil had
given two examples of government departments not responding to letters:
"... where my son had applied for a temporary work permit which was
refused, and I wrote an appeal to the authority concerned; and in
another case, my daughter had applied for a scholarship for a one-year
The controversy over the alleged directive to strike out the petition
erupted last Friday when Muhammad Kamil's judgment was delivered,
declaring the Likas election result null and void.