PUTRAJAYA, Feb 18 – Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek is prepared to provide a platform for an open debate session between Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah and any party disputing the court’s decision on Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy case.
Ahmad Shabery said it was most unfortunate if certain quarters continued to dispute the court’s decision and calling it a political conspiracy with the government to victimise Anwar. “This is a baseless accusation,” he said after attending the handing-over of cheques from the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Humanitarian Fund to assist flood victims, here, Wednesday.
Therefore, Ahmad Shabery said, he was prepared to organise any forum, dialogue session or debate to enable the public to listen to the arguments on the appeal case through national television or any other platform. “I actually don’t want to interfere in this matter, but when there are parties which continue to tarnish the country’s image and its judiciary and to question our judges’ decision to the extent of trying to influence other countries to condemn Malaysia over the case, it can be considered as treachery to this country,” he said.
The minister said the debate platform could also provide a more balanced space for all parties to give their views and watched by the masses. “At least we can listen to more balanced views, as for more than six years, the government side had been keeping quiet because to us, the issue was between Anwar and his aide which he himself chose.”
However, he said, the organising of the debate would depend on whether it would be allowed by the court. Anwar is now serving a five-year jail sentence after the Federal Court had on Feb 10, upheld his conviction and jail sentence for sodomising his former aide, Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan, in 2008.