Muhyiddin defends inclusion of ex-cop in panel


KUALA LUMPUR: Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has defended the inclusion of the police’s former legal unit chief in the taskforce to probe the disappearances of pastor Raymond Koh and Perlis activist Amri Che Mat.

The Home Minister said Datuk Mokhtar Mohd Noor’s neutrality was not compromised as claimed by the pastor’s family.

The family released a statement, questioning the appointment of Mokhtar due to his participation in the Suhakam hearing into the disappearance of both men.

To this, Muhyiddin said: “He was not involved in the hearing. He merely attended an open session.

“So I believe his inclusion will not compromise the task force in carrying out its duties in a fair and transparent manner,” he told reporters after attending the Registrar of Societies’ (RoS) Sustainable Societies programme at Rumah Puspanita here yesterday.

Koh’s family had also said that earlier suggestions to include a member of the Bar Council, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and representative from a non-governmental organisation into the taskforce were ignored.

Amri’s wife, Norhayati Mohd Ariffin, had also expressed concern on the composition of the taskforce, saying it will impact the independence and impartiality necessary for a credible investigation.

She said Mokhtar was a member of the division implicated in the flawed investigation into Amri’s abduction and later, in the team representing the police during the Suhakam inquiry.

To another question, Muhyiddin said that he did not accuse Teoh Beng Hock’s family of wanting more compensation from the government.

“I was only explaining that the process has been long and arduous. In any case, I have left the matter in the hands of the Attorney General who will release a statement next week,” he said.

Muhyiddin was quoted as saying on Wednesday that all avenues on the probe into Teoh’s death had been exhausted.

The minister was further quoted as saying that family had received compensation and continued to demand more, and that he would leave the matter to the AG.

Muhyiddin’s comments were cri­ti­cised by Bukit Gelugor MP Ram­karpal Singh who said Teoh’s family was not seeking what they are not entitled to, adding that the family was only seeking justice.

Teoh, 30, was found dead on July 16, 2009 on the fifth floor corridor of Plaza Masalam in Shah Alam after he had given a statement at the office of the Selangor branch of the MACC on the 14th floor of the building.


   

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