Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The one about law and peace...

Since my last blog entry a lot has happened. Thursday 27th July, Jo attended a Bar Committee meeting. From what I'm allowed to know, they discussed mainly the new amendments to our Legal Profession Act. These were new provisions on the powers of the Legal Disciplinary Board which many felt were a little overboard. The new enactments allows the Board to force lawyers to produce documents and in default to imprison the errant ones.

Its not enough that clients nowadays have little respect for lawyers, now even our peers want to have greater powers to compel us. The worth of a lawyer is now much less than it used to be. Clients feel that by paying us their fees, it buys them our obedience to be at their beck and call. Even highly educated, high positioned individuals act that way. There is indeed a distinct lack of professionalism in the corporate world.

Anyway, it looks like a few members of the Bar will attempt to convene an EGM to discuss this rather draconian new law. Most likely it'll be a futile act. The quorum to hold the EGM is too high, in light of the fact that the new reduced quorum provisions have yet to be passed as law. They'll need some 2,500 lawyers to be present. C'est la vie...

The annual feast of St.Anne's came upon us last week. Mum and my aunt Florence went on Wednesday - which was the actual feast day - and attended mass. Jo & I paid our annual pilgrimage during the day - to avoid the massive crowds - on Friday. There's always a sense of peace and tranquillity when we enter the church, with the soothing music playing in the background. Something just magical about the ambience. Jo & I have our very own special reason to visit the church this time every year. It was on one of our visits about three years back when we prayed hard to be blessed with a baby; this after over two years trying. A month later, Jo was pregnant.

Jo and our little blessing at the new St Anne's fountain...

That Friday night, Jo's parents hosted a dinner for Jo's uncle and aunt from KL who were up here for the St Anne's feast too. We had a simple but delicious dinner at the YMCA restaurant and we brought Ethan along. He had a great time, meeting up with distant cousin Aidan - son of Kenny & Karina Gregory. We've noticed that Ethan takes well to other kids and interacts more recently. Since we don't get to meet many kids, its quite fun to see him that way.

Aidan giving Ethan a hug...

On Saturday, we had a meeting of the Catholic Lawyers' Society. This is a society which has been in existence in KL for over 12 years dedicated to the promotion of justice and peace. They have now decided to spread their wings and turn into a national society. It hasn't been approved yet but once it is, we will be forming a chapter here in Penang. Its something long awaited seeing that there are many issues facing us currently. One of the main events which warrant our concern is the Lina Joy case. Lina is a Malay lady, brought up as a christian but when she asked that her religion be stated as such in her Identification, it was refused. She challenged the decision in court but the High Court and the Court of Appeal held that issues regarding the religion of Islam is to be dealt with in the Syariah Court. If she leaves the religion, she's considered an apostate and there are laws and punishment to be metted out. She appealed to our highest court - the Federal Court. The decision is pending but Lina's arguments centers around Article 11 of the Malaysian Constitution which "guarantees" the freedom of religion to all Malaysians. Seems now they are saying, this freedom doesn't extend to Malays. Malays must be Muslims, no exceptions. Seems harsh but thats also arguable. Many differing views have been put forth. Enough said.

Sunday, 30th July, Jo & I dropped Ethan off at his grandparents' while we headed to Ipoh for the Penang-Perak Bar Games. This is an annual event which is held this year at Perak. I was part of the bowling team. Sadly, Perak turned out a great performance and defeated us for the first time. We'll get them next year!

On Monday, mum went in to the hospital for her 12th and final cycle of chemotherapy. We have to wait and see what she would have to do after that once we see the oncologist sometime next week. Keeping my fingers crossed.

This coming week will be no less hectic. Jo and I are planning to take a break in KL sometime in this two weeks. That'll be something to look forward to....

1 comment:

WorldNative said...

There are all kinds of lawyers. The brave/fearless lawyers fight for the poor and voiceless who are unjustly treated by the society .The greedy lawyers fight for whoever paid for them. And there are those regular 9 to 5 ones who push paper and pencil doing wills and business contracts.
In a democratic country, we need all of them to function. Cheers

 

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