KUALA LUMPUR: The Attorney General (AG) Tommy Thomas must resign for the "blatant interference" by the government in the inquest into the death of fireman Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim, says oppostion politicians.
Opposition bloc head Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that there had been too many instances where the government had been seen to openly interfere in the inquest into the death of the fireman who was killed in the riots at the Seafield Sri Maha Mariamman Temple.
"At the inquest held to determine Adib's cause of death, the AG has refuted the findings of the police.
"The courts have yet to determine the cause of death, but Deputy Public Prosecutor Hamdan Hamzah from the Attorney General's Chamber (AGC) filed an affidavit stating that the death of Adib is not due to being beaten by any party.
"The government seems to have already decided (the cause of death).
"We (the Opposition) feel that this is a blatant interference (in a court inquest)," said Ismail who was speaking at a press conference by Umno and PAS leaders asking for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the death of Adib, who succumbed to his injuries on Dec 17.
"We ask for a Royal Commission of Inquiry, and we will not propose who should be in it, as that is to be determined by the Cabinet," said Ismail.
He said that the Opposition did not intend to politicise the death of Adib and added that if it did, there would have been street protests when he died.
"We are looking out for a civil servant who was killed on duty. This is about justice for Adib," said Ismail.
The 24-year-old member of the emergency medical rescue services (EMRS) at the Subang Jaya Fire and Rescue station was seriously injured in riots on Nov 27, 2018.
He died after 21 days at the National Heart Institute.
At the press conference, Ismail also said that the withdrawal of counsel Syazlin Mansor as instructed by the Housing and Local Government Ministry from the case was uncalled for.
He said said the reasons given by AG did not make sense.
"The AG said that she is the wife of one of the press secretaries of the minister. She is a professional in her own right. It does not matter if she is the husband or wife to an officer of the minister," said Ismail.
PAS secretary general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan said the Opposition intended to get justice for Adib, adding that this had nothing to do with race.
"His name could have been Adib, Maniam or Ah Seng. There is no politics here," said Takiyuddin.
He also alleged that the AG had exceeded his powers in the way the inquest was held.
"The AG must not run the AGC as if it is his own law firm. The inquest to determine the cause of death of Adib is unnecessary, and Selangor deputy police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Ab Rashid Ab Wahab had already said that the case of Adib was a murder," said Takiyuddin.
Police reclassified the case from Section 307 of the Penal Code for attempted murder to Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder when Adib succumbed to his injuries.
"Does the AG not trust the police?
"The inquest is an open inquiry to determine the cause of death and not to find the person responsible. The AG is supposed to assist the court but he already has a conclusion that Adib was not beaten (to death) with the issuance of the affidavit from DPP Hamdan," said Takiyuddin.
The inquest of Adib's death is ongoing but hit a snag on Monday (May 27) when counsel Syazlin withdrew from representing the Housing and Local Government Ministry, Fire and Rescue Department, as well as the family of the deceased fireman at the inquest.