Those involved in a meeting which discussed the alleged wrongdoings of attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail as revealed by former senior police officer Mat Zain Ibrahim, should come forward if they suspect the government's top legal officer had committed wrongdoings.

NONEBar Council chairperson Christopher Leong (right) said any person who suspects that an offence had been committed has the obligation to furnish the details to the authorities.

"Why has no reports been lodged? Other than (former Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigation Department chief) Mat Zain, we heard nothing from other people who were at this meeting. I find that part very strange.

"What was the motivation (for the meeting)? Why did they not come forward to lodge a requisite report if they think that (an offence) happened?" he asked when met by Malaysiakini yesterday.

On Wednesday, Malaysiakini reported that Mat Zain made a statutory declaration (SD) about an Aug 10 meeting at former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad's residence where participants discussed Gani's role in former deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim's "black-eye incident" and the International Court of Justice (ICJ) decision which ruled in favour of Singapore's territorial claim over Batu Puteh, a rocky outcrop off Johor coast.

Other individuals at the meeting, according to the SD, were senior lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, former Commercial Crimes Investigation Department chief Ramli Yusuff and Mahathir's ex-political aide Matthias Chang.
Both Muhammad Shafee and Chang have yet to respond toMalaysiakini's request for comments while Ramli confirmed that the meeting did take place.

Not fair to blame AG alone

On Malaysia's defeat at the ICJ, Leong said it was unfair to pin the blame of the submission of a distorted photograph as evidence squarely on the attorney-general's shoulders.

NONE"(The team) relied on a junior officer to take the picture from the Internet. That was not fabrication from what I understand. It was a mistake...

"Instead now potshots are being taken at the AG (over this)," he said.

According to Mat Zain's SD, participants at the meeting had fingered Abdul Gani for Malaysia's failure to win the case at the ICJ. One issue raised was that of the doctored photograph, designed to depict close proximity between Batu Puteh and the Johor mainland.

The Singaporean delegation had countered this with a photograph of their own, which they argued showed the proper perspective.
Leong said in the Batu Puteh case, Malaysia was not only represented by Abdul Gani but also a number world renowned lawyers, such as Britain's Elihu Lauterpacht and James Crawford.

~ Malaysiakini