KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 10 ― Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has urged Putrajaya to grant him unhindered access to his lawyers, saying the move to limit his sessions with them was an infringement of his rights.
In a statement through his lawyer Latheefa Koya, the jailed PKR leader pointed out that he still has 16 ongoing civil and criminal court cases.
“I am very disappointed with Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s decision to restrict my meetings with my lawyers.
“It is a violation of my right to legal advice, and blocks my lawyers from carrying out their duties and responsibilities,” he said.
“Respect the law and the court process by allowing my lawyers to carry out their duties without any interference,” he added.
At a press conference yesterday, Anwar’s lawyers and family members claimed the ministry has imposed “unconstitutional” restrictions on the leader, limiting him to meeting with his team of counsels for no more than one hour each week.
According to Anwar’s legal team, the restrictions started from August 19 when lawyer Shahid Ali and an accompanying commissioner of oaths were made to leave the prison without meeting their client, after a two-hour wait.
A similar incident occurred on August 27 when the Prisons director refused to allow an affidavit to be signed by Anwar for an urgent court matter the following week.
Anwar’s lawyers added that the imposed one hour a week restriction began on August 28 by Prisons Director Datuk Narender Singh.
However, Anwar’s daughter Nurul Izzah Anwar said she does not blame the prison officials for imposing restrictions, but their superiors in Cabinet.
“The prisons director and the rest are only the operatives who are executing an order. And I fully hold the prime minister and deputy prime minister responsible for such shenanigans and denial of rights,” she said.