Friday, June 06, 2008

Transcript part lll : CSJ vs LKY

The following were transcribed by me from digital audio transcripts obtained from the High Court.

This is a much more complete trancript of the two truncated versions posted on SDP's website here and here.

It continues from Part ll.


LKY: I think, Dr Chee, we'll cut short this proceeding to become more relevant. If I were -

CSJ : Mr Lee, you are again dodging the question.

Singh : No, he's trying to answer the question.

LKY : You have made serious imputations on the intergrity -

CSJ : And then you will answer me.

Singh : Let him finish.

LKY : You have said that we run this government like the NKF. I'm saying that I sued you, as did my son the Prime Minister, on the advice of counsel that we were two persons most damaged because we represented the party. He as Prime Minister and me as founder of the party. I'm not here to answer irrelevant questions. I'm here to get back this question of integrity. What have you got against me which goes to the integrity of this case? I'm here to answer questions as to the quantum of damages.

CSJ : You see, I'm trying to get to this point where making the comparison between the running of the NKF versus the running of Singapore. I've made the point repeatedly - running of the NKF is done without transparency, with the top officials in it because there was much importance placed on dollars and cents and that it was an authoritarian system that was being run. And this is where I want to ask you some of these questions that -

Singh : Your honour, on the NKF as was apparent in the cross-examination of Mr Lee Hsien Loong, I had said that I had objected to the line of questioning for the simple reason that we are past the stage of liability. Dr Chee had every opportunity during the summary judgement to produce all his evidence, your honour, about the links between the NKF and the Government and the parallels between the NKF and the Government. He had countless adjournments, opportunities were given to him to bring out that evidence so that the matter can go for a trial and Lee Kuan Yew cross-examined. What did he do, your honour? He walked out of the room. No evidence, nothing. And today, when that issue is all over, he's trying to revive it and it's impermissable, your honour, so I object to this entire line of questioning.

LKY : May I help the court -

Judge : Yes.

LKY : To come to a conclusion as to the purpose of this cross-examination by asking Dr Chee to look at this testimonial and commendation from Transparency International which was given to me and -

CSJ : Your honour, at this stage, I'm not sure about the procedure but this is highly irregular as I -

LKY : I've been asked questions that pertains to my integrity although this is about the quantum of damages. I'm pointing out to Dr Chee that regardless of what he had said, and what many others have said in the opposition about the integrity of the Government, Transparency International which you've heard about, has given me this award and they are a very, very strong voice. Read it.

CSJ : Your honour, I will take it. I've seen it before. I've read it and I will take it that there is no dispute as far as this document is concerned.

LKY : No -

CSJ : Since you brought it up, Mr Lee, let me -

LKY : If that is so -

CSJ : I think this is my cross-examination. Mr Lee has produced this document and I like to ask him about this -

Singh : Your honour, can it be marked? Can I mark P1, 2, P1, 3? P11 is the document entitled "The Kuala Lumpur Society for Transparency and Integrity, Transparency International Malaysia, the Global Integrity Medal is awarded to the Honourable Senior Minister, the Government of the Republic of Singapore, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, in recognition of the successs -

CSJ : Mr Singh, I think you are running down the time, please. Like I've said already, there's no dispute. Let's take it as marked, your honour. Admit it -

Singh : I'm identifying the document. "In recognition of his success as Prime Minister in stamping out corruption in public life and transforming Singapore into an island of integrity in his private and official life, he has exemplified -

CSJ : Your honour, do me a favour, shall we not please go into this. I think Mr Singh wants the media to know of this. I'll be happy to issue them a copy.

Singh : Page 1, page 2. I was reading page 1 your honour.

Judge : Yes.

Singh : At the bottom, your honour. "He has exemplified ..."

Davindar Singh spends the next two-and-minutes reading aloud the citation.

CSJ : Mr Lee, I'll be very honest with you. I'm very surprised, I'm not kidding. I'm very surprised that you would come into court with this. You are now clutching at straws. Let me tell you the background of this -

LKY : Transparency International is not a straw organisation.

CSJ : Let me, let me finish -

Singh : Let the witness answer please.

CSJ : Transparency International. You had mentioned Peter Eigen. I was in Sao Paulo. I had lunch with Dr Peter Eigen. He is the President of Transparency International. I asked him, "Did you know about this award?" -

Singh : Where is this going? Dr Chee seems to be giving evidence -

CSJ : No, you have read out -

Singh : Sorry, Dr Chee is giving evidence from the Bar of a conversation with someone who is not in court. That is completely inpermissable.

CSJ : Peter Eigen told me that he did not authorise Tranparency International Malaysia to give this award to you.

Singh : That coming from a person -

CSJ : Transparency International, it's in my book which you have struck out. My list of documents -

Singh : Your honour, that coming from a person who has proved according to the witness to be a liar.

CSJ : Now, one more time Mr Lee, are you or are you not depending on this document to show your integrity in this courtroom? I remind you one more time that you need a lot more than this. I can tell you that this award is not worth the paper that it's written on.

LKY: We are also judged by PERC, we also judged by IMD, World Economic Forum and a whole host of other rating agencies.

CSJ: Good. Are you including International Commission Jurists? Are you including Human Rights Watch? Are you including Amnesty International? Are you including Committee to Project Journalists? Are you including International Federation for Free Exchange? Are you including Southeast Asia Press Alliance? Are you including World Movement for Democracy? Are you including Human Rights Defenders? Are you including World Forum for Democratisation in Asia? Are you including National Endowment for Democracy? Are you including Liberal International? Tell me you cited four, I cited you at least ten. Mr Lee. So do me a favour, let us not pick and choose at what endorsements you get because overall if you're trying to show me that your standing in the world is that high you wouldn't be clutching at straws and producing something from Tunku Aziz. I had a conversation with him -

Singh: Your Honour, what is the question?

CSJ: The question is why is Mr Lee depending on such a slipshop - when it is not a verifiable - if you come and tell me that you have been awarded the Nobel Prize I would accept it because that has been vetted. Tell me, who is in this organisation called Transparency International Malaysia? Tell me who are the officer here and when they make awards such as these, what vetting process do they go through?

Singh: Can we ask the cross examiner if he has a question? If he has not and he wants to make a speech and maybe for the next one hour left he can make his political speech. If he has no more questions for the witness he should say so.

CSJ: Your Honour, my question is this: Mr Lee has brought this ridiculous piece of paper and tells me that he is depending on this to prove his reputation. I'm asking him, does this plaintiff know who is behind this Transparency International Malaysia?

LKY: Your Honor, the man is on the Internet and the organisation is also on the website. They asked me in a private letter if I would receive this letter. They were wanting to score a point that it is possible to have in Southeast Asia a clean government. I agreed and I assume he would not sign a document citing TI which rates us always among the top 5 unless it had been authorised to do so. And now you are saying that he is liar, that he has falsely attributed this paragraph to Dr Eigen. Well then I say if you brought Dr Eigen here with an affidavit, then you can demolish Mr Adnan (should be Aziz) but not demolish me because I do not depend on Transparency International. I'm just putting this as an example of what PERC, IMD -

CSJ: But we haven't got the records of PERC, IMD and so in line with what Mr Singh said, let's dispense with it. Because if you did, you would produce them.

LKY: Ha. The simple answer really is between the competing NGOs, one for HR, one for liberal ideas of how governments should be and rating agencies concerned with actual assessment of government performance - where do investors put their money in. Have not put their money in?If you study the World Bank and IMF reports in countries which are unable and corrupt -

CSJ: I think you're deliberately running down the clock. Let me ask you this question -

LKY: You are asking me this question -

CSJ: Let me pose this question. You had mentioned the Political and Economic Risk Consultancy -

Judge: Dr Chee! The witness, continue, finish -

CSJ: Let me ask you this question -

Judge: Dr Chee! I would like to hear this witness. Please continue.

LKY: There are liberal organisations which disagree with the way Singapore runs its social system but we believe we know better. Otherwise we wouldn't be here, otherwise we wouldn't have this courtroom, otherwise you wouldn't be able to be living in an HDB flat. That's the final test.

CSJ: I think you're making this leap of logic that even Bruce Hawking would find it hard to follow. You are saying that without you without this entire government, we wouldn't be here? A little presumptuous, don't you think?

LKY: Your Honour, I'm saying -

CSJ: You see, Mr Lee, in Hong Kong people thrive without you and your system, in Taiwan people thrive without you and your system, in Korea people thrive without you and your system, and you are coming to this court and telling me that what we have right now is all because of you and your system that you have created. I think you are making too much of a presumption.

Singh : He should not be afraid of the answers, your honour. He should allow the answers.

CSJ : I would like some parity in being able to have this exchange.

Singh : Your honour, can the witness be allowed to answer the question because Dr Chee has already asked the question. The witness was answering the question.

CSJ : Mr Lee, my question right now is this - Mr Lee, you have cited Political Economic Risk Consultancy.

Judge : Dr Chee.

CSJ : Yes.

Judge : If you asked a question, I presume you want an answer.

CSJ : No, your honour, let me continue with my next question.

Singh : The witness has not completed the answer to the earlier question. Now, unless Dr Chee withdraws the question or says he's afraid of the answer, the witness should be allowed to complete.

Judge : Yes, please complete your answer.

LKY : There are various parts of this government which do not comply with Western practices, including the law of libel, but it is a system that have. And you have cited Taiwan, Hong Kong, in which case I ask you to remember that the President of Taiwan, after visiting Singapore earlier this year, said he admires Singapore and he wants Taiwan to become like Singapore, corruption-free. You have raised it. If you like, before these proceedings end, I will find the quote and give it to you. And you have also read, you must have read, you read voraciously, what Premier Wen Jiabao has told Mr Donald Tsang after he came to Singapore. He says, " Please go to Singapore and see what they are doing."

CSJ : Now Mr Lee..

LKY : And now may I add that the Hong Kong governor Sir Murray MacLehose, came to Singapore to study our anti-corruption laws and our anti-corruption system with the CPIB and he went back to Hong Kong and instituted similar system, and cleaned up the corruption that was seeping Hong Kong society. That is the integrity of Singapore and if we failed on that, the Government should be prosecuted and ousted.

CSJ: Is this the same integrity that you are referring to when your government in 1963 arrested all your political opponents under Operation Coldstore?

Davinder Singh rises to object.

Dr Chee (turning to Mr Singh): Let him answer, he wants to answer.

Judge : Question is disallowed.

Singh: Thank you, Your Honour.

CSJ : He wants to talk about integrity and I want to talk about integrity. Let's talk about integrity, Mr Lee. Is this the same integrity as you are referring to when you jailed Mr Chia Thye Poh for 32 years, when you imprisoned Dr Lim Hock Siew for 17 years..

Singh : I object, your honour.

CSJ : And when depriving them all –

Judge : Question is disallowed.

LKY : May I just point out that the final test is what Singapore was when I became Prime Minister in 1959 and what Singapore is now. We had less that a $100 million in the kitty. Today, between the GIC, Temasek and all the assets that we have. I'm not disclosing this but Global Financial Services assessed Singapore's sovereign wealth fund at over US$300 billion.

CSJ : And -

LKY : And had we not run such a government, we wouldn't have had these funds nor would we have the strength to defend the Singapore dollar whatever the speculators do nor would we have the infrastructure that we have including this court where we offer people like Dr Chee the luxury of all the facilities including digital transcripts that come up as the proceedings go on.

CSJ : You see, Mr Lee, my problem with this -

LKY : These are the manifestations -

CSJ : Sure -

LKY : Of the basic policy. Let me finish. You've asked me and I'm pointing out that final test is not Transparency International, PERC, IMD, IMF but the solid actions, the solid results of the lives of the people and what Singapore is, and what you're trying to do is to demolish it.

CSJ : That is complete nonsense.

LKY : And have the corruption that exist in other places.

CSJ : Your honour, let me take you back. I've told you already. What you are saying is that what you have done - the arrests of all your political opponents, the closing down of an independent and free media, all your shenanigans including making sure that I'm not allowed to get up on stage during an election rally, my party's rally, and what you've done, increasing the election deposit, by introducing the GRC - You are saying that all that is justified because now $3 billion -

LKY : $300 billion dollars.

CSJ : I'm sorry. I beg your pardon. $300 billion in our kitty, which by the way, I remind you, you will not let the people enjoy its fruits.

Judge : Dr Chee -

CSJ : You have continue to help -

Judge : Dr Chee, these questions are irrelevant. I've already indicated that they are not to be pursued in this courtroom. This is not the proper forum. There is no requirement for the witness to answer the question. Move on please.

Continues in Part lV



PART lll





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US blogger released on bail in Singapore

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why make life so difficult for yourself and others ?

So old still want to fight ?

Don't you think it's better to go and enjoy your the things that your salary can buy ?

Time is running out for you, you know.