Friday, December 12, 2008

VK Lingam cannot challenge Royal Commission findings - Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Dec 12, 2008

The KL High Court has denied leave to Datuk V.K. Lingam and four others to seek a judicial review of the Royal Commission of Inquiry findings into videoclip that implicated them.

The four others are businessman Vincent Tan, Barisan Nasional secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor and former chief justices Eusoff Chin and Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim.

The Royal Commission’s findings were published in May, concluding that the clip was authentic and that Lingam was the person shown speaking on the telephone, apparently peddling positions in the judiciary.

In asking for the review in August, Lingam said he had at least 12 reasons to persuade the High Court to consider reviewing the findings of the Royal Commission of Inquiry.

“The commission had acted in excess of jurisdiction by going beyond its terms of reference. It took into account irrelevant matters and completely lost its focus,” Lingam had said.

He had argued that the disparaging remarks made against him by commissioner Datuk Mahadev Shankar was clearly infected and tainted with bias when he (Mahadev) continued to “sit in participation and adjudication at the inquiry and made perverse findings” against him.

He said there were also apparent bias on the part of commissioners Prof Tan Sri Dr Khoo Kay Kim and Tan Sri Steve Shim Lip Kiong.

“There were breach of rules of natural justice when the commission did not allow Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, lawyer R. Sivarasa and Anwar’s personal assistant Sim Tze Tzin who were already summoned as witnesses to give evidence at the inquiry.

“The evidence of the three under cross-examination of my counsel would establish that the video clip was edited,’’ Lingam had said.

Senior federal counsel Azizah Nawawi had objected to the leave application, saying that the Royal Commission did not make any binding or conclusive decisions and that its findings and recommendations could not be reviewed.

High Court Justice Abdul Kadir Musa, in making his decision on Friday, threw out the leave application by Lingam and the others with cost.

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