RCI to be set up to scrutinise Tommy Thomas' book, says Azalina

PETALING JAYA: A Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) will be set up to further scrutinise Tan Sri Tommy Thomas' (pic) book, "My Story: Justice in the Wilderness", says Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said.

"The government views allegations related to breaches of professional responsibility of a particular highest position seriously.

"This is because transparency and accountability are the foundations of trust of the rakyat towards the administration of justice and government institutions.

"As such, the proposed Terms of Commission of the RCI will have a wider scope and not limited to recommendations which were submitted by the Special Task Force (STF)," the Minister in the Prime Minister's Department in charge of law and institutional reforms said in a statement on Wednesday (Jan 11).

Azalina said the decision to set up the RCI was among the suggestions contained in a report submitted by the special task force and tabled in the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday.

"After considering the suggestions proposed by the Special Task Force chaired by Datuk Seri Fong Joo Chung in his report, the Cabinet agreed among others, on the proposed setting up of the RCI to scrutinise the matter more holistically," she added.

She said that the detailed terms of the RCI, its membership and duration would be proposed by the government later.

"The aim of the RCI is to seek the truth and put forward recommendations to the government on reforming the nation's legal institution and not to find fault with any particular party," she noted.

On Sept 30, former prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob directed an immediate investigation over Thomas’ allegations in the book about the judiciary, among others.

The special task force, chaired by Sarawak Legal Adviser and former state attorney general Datuk Seri Fong Joo Chung, identified 19 important issues in the book that required the government’s attention.

Published last year, Thomas' book was criticised by various quarters including the Attorney General's Chambers, lawyers, politicians and some of the public for allegedly containing elements of incitement, insults and defamation.

More than a hundred police reports were lodged against Thomas over his book.

Thomas was appointed as the attorney general under the Pakatan Harapan government in 2018 but resigned after the administration collapsed in February 2020.

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 Tommy Thomas , Book , Azalina Othman


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