Zaid Ibrahim resigns as Law Minister

UPDATE,16 September 2008:

I salute Zaid Ibrahim for taking the most honourable step to resign.

At last YB Zaid Ibrahim has decided to join the rank and file of brave people by resigning from Badwai’s cabinet. It has been quite sometime that Zaid Ibrahim’s position was untenable in the Cabinet because he was unable to deliver or implement judicial reforms as announced in the press.

Today, Zaid Ibrahim took the most unprecedented step in Malaysia’s political history by resigning based on disagreement with the Prime Minister and his Cabinet for using ISA against Malaysians. Zaid Ibrahim took the honourable step to resign based on principles. I salute Zaid Ibrahim for standing up for the people of Malaysia to oppose the outdated and oppressive Internal Security Act (ISA), which has been abused by the BN Government to suppress its critics/opposition.

All peace loving Malaysians must join together to peacefully oppose the BN Government for abusing the ISA for their own political objectives.

Let’s us all attend the MALAYSIA DAY Celebration organised by Pakatan Rakyat at 7:00 pm at Stadium MBPJ Kelana Jaya. The speakers are: YB Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Tuan Guru YB Dato” Seri Haji Hadi Awang. The
police has issued a permit for this celebration.


I sincerely salute Zaid Ibrahim for his stand on the recent ISA arrests as the de facto Law Minister and quits office because he had said “If my position is untenable, I will leave.”

Malaysiakini’s full report as follow …

Law Minister Zaid ‘tenders resignation
Fauwaz Abdul Aziz | Sep 15, 08 2:17pm
De facto Law Minister Zaid Ibrahim has tendered his resignation over the government’s use of the Internal Security Act, which allows detention without trial, against three individuals last week.


According to a reliable source, Zaid’s resignation letter was delivered to the Prime Minister’s Office at around 2pm today.

However, Zaid could not be reached for comments, He is expected to call a press conference later today.

The minister has expressed his disagreement to last Friday’s ISA dragnet where DAP parliamentarian and Selangor senior exco Teresa Kok, controversial blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin and Sin Chew Daily reporter Tan Hoon Cheng were nabbed for allegedly being a threat to national security.

zaid ibrahim pc 110608 03Zaid had earlier said that he would try to meet Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi some time this week to discuss the matter.

Malaysiakini was informed, however, that Zaid did not meet with his boss before the letter was submitted to PM’s office in Putrajaya this afternoon.

In a telephone interview yesterday, Zaid told Malaysiakini: “We have a government that commits to laws and reforms, we can’t be using old-style politics or resort to creating fear. We have laws and they (the detainees) should be charged in court.”

“If my position is untenable, I will leave,” he said.

Zaid argued that the ISA should only be used to curb terrorism, which was the reason why it was first enacted in 1960.

“The problem with the ISA now is that it is used against certain people, it is a very unjust law,” he added.

Zaid said he felt “very sad that people like Teresa, whom I know personally, can be seen as a threat.

“I can’t see how a journalist doing her duty, or even Raja Petra, can be seen as a national threat. If their statements upset certain people, let the police investigate,” he said.

He added that he was against the government to use such a “strong-arm tactic” against any individuals.

Little support from cabinet colleagues

Zaid, who is the former Kota Baru MP, was made a senator and named as minister in charge of legal affairs during the cabinet reshuffle by premier Abdullah in March.

His appointment was lauded by many quarters as it was seen as a gesture by the prime minister to put in place judicial reforms.

Zaid lamented, however, that the latest ISA arrests dealt a blow to his six-month-long task of trying to regenerate the judiciary.

The minister also conceded that his views on certain matters do not go down well with his cabinet colleagues.

“I don’t want to make it difficult for him (Abdullah). If my views are inconsistent or unsuitable (to that of the cabinet’s), I can leave the government.

“It (the crackdown) is a setback (on my work). The government wanted to change certain things, otherwise they don’t need me (to be in the cabinet),” he said.

A lawyer by training, Zaid was chairperson and senior partner in Zaid Ibrahim and Co – the largest law firms in the country – before he was appointed senator.

Upon his appointment as minister, Zaid had resigned from his position in the law firm and was replaced by Dr Nik Norzrul Thani.

It is not known whether Zaid, who established the company in 1987, will return to full-time practice.


  1. Wah lau eh. My respect to Zaid Ibrahim. He did right and a true gentleman.

    We want to see more of our ministers to behave like him. Cannot agree on the ISA arrests and cannot help fix the problem must resign lah.

    Maybe this is the beginning of change in BN kah?

    Halo Syed Hamid, when you going to follow example ah? You are a disgrace you know and the way you talk you are more stupid than us rakyat lah.

    Maybe you must wear wig lah like Samy Veloo. Too much Malaysian sun shine on your head make your brain sudah bodoh. Very sad for you lah.

  2. Good that he has left a bunch of primates like Humid Al-blur and Bung Radin. Wish him well and I hope he joins Pakatan.

  3. Perhaps if more ministers were to uphold their principles and beliefs like how Zaid does, UMNO and BN would not be in the situation it is today.
    What Zaid has done is to take ministerial responsibility for failure to carry out his job appropriately, although the blame here is not on him but the unchanging govt.
    Syed Hamid Albar should take a lesson from Zaid and resign too!

  4. I like him very much. Congratulation to Zaid!!!!!!! for his daring and bravo. He is a very respect law minister,
    when is all the other ministers will be following him soon.
    Hope he would join PR very soon.

  5. I heard that Badawi asked him to take 2 week leave and come back to work, i.e. resignation rejected.

    So the PM expect this thing to blow over in 2 weeks? I suppose he is working on the assumption that Malaysians mudah lupa.

  6. The word of a true politician carries weight like gold! Once in a while we find true blood type such as the law minister, Zaid Ibrahim from the ruling party and that’s rare. As a law minister from day one, he actually find it very difficult to have his own party support in the many changes that he had proposed and thus his post is just untenable.

    The wind of change had has been blowing across the world for sometime now and many nations are affected. Similarly, we are experiencing the same change that begun in our hearts and this change cannot be curtailed nor be cowed by any political forces. The people at large just wanted change to usher in a new Malaysia with less politicking but more of being a true Malaysian where all of us can be colour blind and hope for the good of others first before self.

    Love thy neighbours as thyself and by no means it is easy but at least if each of us can be less selfish then this nation can rise up to regain its glory that the founding fathers were proud off !!!

  7. Initially, I respected him very much for making such a brave decision against the Government he is supporting.

    After the second day press conference, shit!!, he was taking the excuses to pull himself out from the murky water inside the cabinet.

    Can we trust him!!!!

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