Saturday, October 27, 2007

Malaysian Bar Headquater in Kuala Lumpur

The Malaysian Bar was established via a statute under the Advocates and Solicitors' Ordinance 1947. This ordinance was repealed by the Legal Profession Act 1976. The Malaysian Bar is an independent Bar with the objective of upholding the rule of law and the cause of justice and protect the interest of the legal profession as well as that of the public.

The legal profession in Malaysia has a membership of approximately 12,000 members with membership increasing by 10 -15% annually. An advocate and solicitor is a member of the Malaysian Bar if he or she have a valid Practising Certificate.

The Bar Council is made up of thirty six members who are elected annually to manage the affairs and execute the functions of the Malaysian Bar. Members of the include the President, the Vice-President, the immediate past President, the Chairman of each of the eleven State Bar Committees, one member elected by each of the eleven State Bars to be its representative to the Bar Council and twelve members elected from throughout Peninsular Malaysia by way of postal ballot.

Below is a photo of its headquater in Kuala Lumpur, near Medan Pasar (Market Square) and not far from Pasar Seni (Art Market):

Malaysia Bar Headquater

You can see the posters that read "No to Corruption", "Stop the Patronage, Stop the Rot" and the third one I can't read. These banners were left overs of the Long March for Justice, which was triggered by the exposure of the now infamous VK Lingam tape. You can view the tape in the above post.

The reference "Patronage" is related to the current practice of the ruling coalition, the Barisan, where favors are dispersed based on political support, and which leads to corruption. The phrase "Stop the rot" refers to the decline of the independence of the Malaysian Judiciary and its reputation since 1988 when the then Prime Minister sacked the then Chief Justice Tun Salleh Abas and a few other just judges in a kangaroo tribunal. This has long been suspected by the public, but with the exposure of the VK Lingam tape where he was heard in a telephone conversation with what many said was the current Chief Justice, Ahmad Fairuz brokering the appointments of judges and the award of title.

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