Full Trial for Zahid, Reform NOW (or lose legitimacy)

Full Trial for Zahid, Reform NOW (or lose legitimacy)

13 September 2023
Signatures: 207Next Goal: 500
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Why this petition matters

The recent decision by the Attorney General’s Chambers (AGC) to grant DNAA (discharge not amounting to an acquittal) to Zahid Hamidi in relation to the 47 charges involving millions of ringgit in connection with Yayasan Akal Budi, is the latest in a series of indefensible actions by the current administration since the formation of the Pakatan Harapan-Barisan National government.

The decision to take such action despite a prima facie case has been established raises serious questions about the government’s commitment and ability to govern our country with integrity and in accordance with our Federal Constitution and the rule of law. The decision will result in an erosion of public trust and confidence in our institutions, particularly in the AGC’s competence to investigate matters thoroughly and impartially so that we can hold corrupt elites accountable for their conduct.

The decision to discharge Zahid Hamidi from such serious charges suggests a disturbing departure from the principle of equality, and sends a dangerous message that those in positions of power and influence can act with impunity, and escape accountability for their actions.

This perception of a two-tier justice system, one for the elite and another for the masses, is corroding the very foundation of our democracy and undermining people’s faith in the rule of law and good governance.

Since November 2022, we have witnessed a slew of actions which undermine our trust and confidence in the Prime Minister and his government, whose promises of reforms to uphold our fundamental freedoms and human rights have come to nought. This has been demonstrated regularly by the constant backtracking on promises to review, amend or repeal draconian laws such as the Sedition Act, Printing Presses and Publications Act, Official Secrets Act, and SOSMA, amongst others.

There has also been an increased stifling of our freedom of expression, including censorship of media and other online content, banning of films and publications, restrictions on academic freedom, and infringements on gender based expressions. There has also been no visible commitment or action to pursue institutional reforms, including making the MACC independent and accountable only to the Parliament.

This crisis of confidence in the government’s ability to deliver on its reform agenda must be dealt with and in order to enhance accountability and transparency, we demand the following:

1)   The establishment of an independent committee to reaffirm and develop a detailed roadmap (including timelines) of the current government’s reform priorities. This independent committee should include civil society representatives and build on the recommendations made by the IRC established in 2018;

2)   Immediately separate the roles of Attorney General and Public Prosecutor and establish a mechanism to ensure that the appointment of public prosecutors is independent of political interference;

3)   Reaffirm, without delay, the government's plans to review, amend or repeal ALL arbitrary and oppressive laws that restrict our human rights and freedom of expression; and

4)   Reaffirm, without delay, the government's plans for institutional reforms in relation to independent MACC and IPCMC.

We also urge the public to reclaim our voice as Malaysia, and undertake the following on 16 September 2023 (Saturday) to commemorate Hari Malaysia in support of our demands:

Use the #REFORMforMalaysia or #REFORMdemiMalaysia on Saturday and repost our demands.

Please sign this online petition and write to the Prime Minister to reiterate the call for accountability

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Signatures: 207Next Goal: 500
Support now