As a member of some sub-committee in Bar Council and Selangor Bar Committee, I was invited for the officiation of Lawasia just now, 29.10.08, at KL Convention Centre. Lawasia is like a coalition of Bar Associations around Asia-Pacific region up until Brazil. Its current outgoing President is the former Malaysian Bar Council President, Mr. Mah Weng Kwai. It seems that Malaysia had hosted Lawasia Conference twice before in 1968 and 1998. Our turn seems to come every 20 years.
There were 4 speeches after a percussion group (I think they were the HAND, quite good!) hammered the eardrums of the newly installed Chief Justice, Tan Sri Zaki and the new President Court of Appeal. Their investiture was today in front of DYMM Agung and how much you shouted or blogged about them being UMNO cronies or how much lawyers hated them, it wouldn't matter. They are in...
Anyway, the highlights of the speeches were when Dato' Ambiga let rips about ISA in front of the international delegates and press. She was even praised by the MC, who herself is a lawyer, on "telling it as it is". How apt...
Then Pak Lah, our beloved PM, had to do something about the parting shot by Ambiga.
He suddenly said in his speech that the Bar Council is taking the initiative to amend the Legal Profession Act 1974, to let foreign lawyers to practice in Malaysia.
I am one of the sub-committee on this matter which is still under negotiation with various government agencies and under a gag order and now he says that its already agreed upon and told the whole world about it. Ambiga was exchanging glances with Christopher Leong, who was also in the thick of things on the foreign lawyers matter, when this was announced.
So, there you have it. Politics at the highest level. Oh, you want to know what Pak Lah has to say about ISA? Using some holy scripture quotes from Quran in which he has a duty to the people to ensure justice is for all.
P/S - I have pictures of the event but I want to post this first then upload the pics later