Anwar: review how Sosma detainees treated in jail

Veena Babulal and Hidayatul Akmal Ahmad

KUALA LUMPUR: Incoming PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has called for a review of procedures under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (SOSMA). Anwar who said he would raise the issue with the Home Minister, said he was specifically referring to the way detainees were treated behind bars. “Solitary confinement, not giving adequate access to family, lawyers or exercises.” “And I think immediate action needs to be taken, whilst the authorities, the police review these cases separately,” he said during a book launch on his comeback today. Anwar said he was not privy to every single case but believed the Sosma cases should be reviewed. “I don’t think one should be detained under Sosma just because he uses an Islamic State (IS) shirt. Asked whether the law should be repealed he said that there must be a law against terrorists or perpetrators of terrorist acts. “What I’m questioning is the blanket sort of, vague range of legal flexibility that may allow the authorities to decide without recourse.” “For example if you are acquitted, pending appeal, you will still be in jail. This I think may not be the right legal framework for a free, democratic country,” he said. At the launch the former Internal Security Act detainee went on record to say that Sosma was worse than the Internal Security Act (ISA). The book is titled Anwar Returns: The Final Twist; The Prosecution and Release of Anwar was penned by Mark Trowell and launched at Hilton Kuala Lumpur today. The event also featured an address by his wife Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail. Meanwhile asked if he would be acting against judges who had presided over his sodomy case, Anwar said he was not interested to take action on it. However, as there has been legal action initiated against prosecutor Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah for allegedly receiving RM9.5 mil that compromised the case, Anwar hoped the wrong will be corrected. “We have made appeals on the case of Shafee Abdullah receiving RM9.5 million and we hope that the court is not careless and pussyfoots this case.” Lawyers for Liberty had called for the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and the police to probe allegations that former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak paid RM9.5 million to Sodomy 2 prosecutor Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah.


Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim who said he would raise the issue with the Home Minister, said he was specifically referring to the way detainees were treated behind bars. (BERNAMA)

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