‘Look at Perlis activist and pastor’s abduction cases together’


  • Nation
  • Thursday, 07 Mar 2019

KUALA LUMPUR: There is a need to look at Perlis activist Amri Che Mat and pastor Raymond Koh’s cases together as they bear similarities in the way both men were abducted, the Human Rights Com­mission of Malay­sia (Suhakam) heard.

The Suhakam panel, comprising commissioners Datuk Mah Weng Kwai, Prof Datuk Dr Aishah Bidin and Dr Nik Salida Suhaila Nik Saleh, had called for an oral submissions hearing to clarify issues that were brought up in the written submissions by the police and the lawyers representing the family of Koh and Amri.

In yesterday’s hearing, Datuk Jerald Gomez, the lawyer representing Koh’s family, said among the similarities were that Amri and Koh were being monitored by the authorities prior to their abduction.

Gomez said Koh was monitored and stopped by officers at immigration checkpoints while Amri was closely watched when Perlis Mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin and Comm Datuk Awaludin Jadid, the former principal assistant director of the Special Branch’s Social Extremism Division met to discuss on Perlis Hope and Amri’s Syiah links. He said both cases also had links to religious-related activities where Koh was said to be involved in proselytising while Amri in Syiah activities.

Another similarity, Gomez pointed out, was the same coloured Toyota Vios car at the abduction scene.

Gomez also said that there were contradictions made by police officers on who had found the items which were seized during a raid in a house in Kampung Selarong, Pengkalan Hulu.

Previously, four items related to Koh were reportedly seized at the house of a drugs and arms smuggler following a shootout in Kedah on June 2017.

The items were photos of Koh, his house and his vehicle, as well as a licence plate with the number plate of his car ST5515D.

“It was planted. I think what happened was the first team that went in never discovered the photographs,” he said, claiming that the handwriting on the search list was different from the first evidence list.

Lawyer David Morais, representing Amri’s family, pointed out that Amri’s wife, Norhayati Mohd Ariffin, testified that Sgt Shamzaini Mohd Daud revealed to her that the Special Branch was involved in her husband’s disappearance.

“It was a flimsy investigation and there was no serious attempt to classify it as an abduction,” he said.

When met after the inquiry, the wives of both men, Susanna Liew and Norhayati, said there were “reasonable grounds” to believe that their husbands were abducted by the police.

The inquiry will present its decision on April 3.

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