KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 — The warning against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim issuing unauthorised statements from prison is an attempt to silence the PKR de facto leader ahead of the general election, his lawyer alleged today.
Padang Serai MP N. Surendran, who represents Anwar in several cases, criticised Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed over his caution yesterday that such activity could cause the jailed Opposition leader’s prison term to be extended.
“By doing so, Nur Jazlan is acting in breach of Anwar’s right to freedom of speech guaranteed under the Constitution.
“Nur Jazlan’s attempt to silence Anwar is also in complete breach of the basic principles of fairness and justice,” he said in a statement.
Surendran told the deputy minister imprisonment did not erase an individual’s rights and liberties, and reminded the latter that Barisan Nasional leaders still regularly targeted Anwar even though he remains in prison.
He said Anwar should be given at least the right of reply.
Yesterday, Nur Jazlan said he noticed that an increasing number of public statements were attributed to Anwar, and said this was in breach of the Prison Department’s rules that require all such communication to be vetted.
He added that such violations may jeopardise the former deputy prime minister’s June 8 early release from the five-year prison sentence he received for sodomy.