BERA (June 19): Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said there is nothing wrong for judges to be investigated on allegations of misconduct or wrongdoings but the matter should not be publicised.
Ismail Sabri said no one is above the law and enforcement agencies like the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and the police were free to investigate if they suspected a criminal offence had been committed.
However, to preserve respect for the judicial institution, investigations against judges should not be publicised, he said.
"There is no need for them (enforcement agencies) to announce who is involved … telling the media about the investigation.
"I do not see anything wrong about investigating judges implicated in criminal wrongdoings. We are not saying a crime has been committed, as it is only at the investigation stage.
“But there is no need to publicise it and reveal to the media the names of those under probe. Maybe that is what is being questioned,” he said, without naming the individuals or agencies involved.
He said this when asked on the Malaysian Bar’s ‘Walk for Judicial Independence’ assembly held at Padang Merbok in Kuala Lumpur on Friday.
Ismail Sabri said the Malaysian Bar’s action might be in response to the way the agency concerned was conducting its investigation.
Ismail Sabri, the Bera MP, was speaking at a media conference after attending a meet-and-greet session with workers of the Bera Parliamentary Constituency Jalinan Rakyat (JR) at Kompleks Rakan Muda Bera here on Sunday.
He reiterated that the government subscribes to the principle of separation of powers, with the judiciary given the freedom to conduct trials and make rulings without interference from any parties.
Meanwhile, when asked on the proposed Political Funding Bill, he said the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law, and Attorney-General’s Chambers) had been directed to make comprehensive studies for it to be tabled to the Cabinet before being taken to Parliament.
Asked on today’s programme, Ismail Sabri, who is UMNO vice-president, reminded the Barisan Nasional (BN) machinery to start preparing for the 15th general election (GE15) and not wait until the last minute.
"We need to be prepared because GE15 has to be held one year from now at the latest and that is not a long time. That is if it is held in July (next year) but it can also be called earlier,” he added.
Ismail Sabri expressed satisfaction with the cooperation shown by component parties involved in the BN machinery, including in activating the JR.