“If a tree fell and not many people heard it, then did the tree really fall?”
This is exactly what Jolovan Wham’s lawyers appear to be saying on Tuesday (17 Jul) when they said the Facebook post that got Wham into a tussle with the AGC had only 29 likes.
Hmm… let’s gostan a bit. Mr Wham made this post made on 27 April (which is still up, by the way)
From what we see, he is saying that Singapore’s judges are not fair as compared to Malaysia’s judges when cases have political implications. Since he cannot be saying that the judges dancing with the opposition, then he must be saying that the judges are pro-PAP right?
According to ST, Mr Wham’s lawyers also argued that their client never intended to imply that the Singapore courts were not independent. And that he was merely comparing the two judicial systems, which constitutes fair critique.
Umm, excuse me, Malaysia has a reputation for being clean and uncorrupt? Since when? So is he saying that Singapore is lagi corrupt?
Then here comes the best part (we lifted it from ST):
“Defence lawyer Eugene Thuraisingam said Mr Wham had seen the World Economic Forum’s rankings on judicial independence and thus believed that it was legitimate to compare the two countries’ legal systems.”
But then Mr Thuraisingam kena called out for basically not doing his homework properly – AGC’s Senior State Counsel Francis Ng pointed out that that the World Economic Forum report that Mr Thuraisingam referred to ranks Singapore’s judiciary 22 places above Malaysia’s.
Uh-oh! That’s not very bright is it?
Mr Wham claims he did not intend to scandalize the courts, and he was being an armchair critique on Facebook (yup, nowadays everyone also can be critiques on social media yah?). But yet when it is pointed out that his criticism was based on a misreading of the World Economic Forum report, he still continued to be stubborn and claims there’s nothing wrong here.
He refused to apologise and the post is still up on his Facebook.
While his post never really grabbed many people’s attention (as the defence argued), he sure made an impact when SDP’s John L. Tan felt the need to add some oil to this saga and made a Facebook post that also join in the fun to accuse the courts of being unfair.
Wham and Tan also happily shared the letters they received for their court summons on their Facebook and made several cross posts, showing solidarity with each other. #grouphugs
And just awhile before they are due in court, Wham also posted about giving a talk at this Function 8 discussion on Judging the Judiciary. So many topics under the sun, of course he had to talk about the Judiciary right?
With all these “neh neh ni poo poo!” actions, it really makes you go “Sure anot??!” about the part where he had no intent of showing contempt.
Actually we give him credit for being a little subtle and not simply just turning up in a kangaroo outfit when he appeared before the judge on Tuesday.
So the moral of the story here is, act blur doesn’t make you live longer actually. Also, maybe Mr Wham can take a leaf from WP’s book when they faster removed a video when they were corrected in Parliament on PUB’s capital reserves. THAT, is the right thing to do yah?
We want to also tell Kirsten Han that she is wrong. It was not freedom of speech that was tried in court on Tuesday. It was foolhardiness and tale-spinning that was standing trial this week. And activists should not expect to be above the law while hiding behind the banner of “freedom of speech”.