Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Appeal Judgement Reserved at High Court Today

The appeal by prosecution against acquittals of 5 activists had been heard this whole morning at Court 6C, at the Supreme Court Level 6. The first of one of such appeals.

The judgment was reserved by Justice Choo Han Teck.

I had argued that the District Court had made the right judgment, and these appeals should had been dismissed, as there was only a walk and no procession.

I reiterated that I was not wearing the same Democracy Now / Freedom Now T-shirt, nor I had any mutual agreement with any other persons to be a part of any activities organized for that day, 16 September 2007 which had been proved in the evidence at District Court. I was there at a public place individually and independently to make observations and take photos and videos as a blogger just like the other bloggers and reporters who were also there. If ANYONE who simply just WALKED the same route is considered as taking part in the alleged procession then they must convict the police (half a dozen of matas) who also followed the journey. ;-)

Therefore the prosecutors' position is self-conflicting.

I raised evidence using parliamentary proceeding (Hansads) that Wong Kan Seng & Ho Peng Kee had both announced their UNLAWFUL policies to have Singapore Police Force not granting any permits to outdoor political activities unless they are held within stadiums where outbreak of disorderliness can be easily contained. This policy is UNLAWFUL because it is not supported by any legislations, unless there is legislation supporting blanket ban against outdoor political activities, THE COURTS NOT BINDED. This discrimination against political activities apart from other activities is unlawful and unconstitutional.

I insisted that all citizens and members of public have the same rights and lawfulness to use the public roads and walkways to convey themselves like any other road users, as long as they WALKED and used the passage just like any other road users, and no permits must be required for them to do that. Any discrimination otherwise is unlawful.

It was found in District Court's trial that the activists on 16 September 2007 were using the sidewalks and roads lawfully in no way different from other users of these public roads, no processions was ever formed.

I argued that since the prosecution agreed that the legislation in force did not provided any specific definition on what they called Procession, therefore it was meant that the Ordinary Meaning of this English word applies, just in the same language as the legislations were made in. Then the dictionary's definitions will suffices.

the act of moving along or proceeding in orderly succession or in a formal and ceremonious manner, as a line of people, animals, vehicles, etc.
the line or body of persons or things moving along in such a manner.
Ecclesiastical. an office, litany, etc., said or sung in a religious procession.
Theology. the emanation of the Holy Spirit from the Father and later, in the Western Church, from the Son: distinguished from the “generation” of the Son and the “unbegottenness” of the Father.
the act of coming forth from a source.
–verb (used without object)
to go in procession.
Use procession in a Sentence
See images of procession
Search procession on the Web
bef. 1150; early ME (<>

I illustrated that NDP; Religious (Taoist Thaipusam) Processions; Wedding & Funeral Processions are processions because of their formal and ceremonious natures. In contrary a normal Walk by pedestrians lacks these features, which made the differences between a procession and a walk. When there is a procession it is seen and recognized by other road users and they will respect and avoid the procession as a whole moving contingent and stop to make way for the procession to pass as a whole. On 16 September 2007, that was not a procession because the activists use the road mixed together with ordinary crowds.

Their journey of 12 Km was interrupted by stoppages at various buildings randomly and individually by each activists, it was not a continuous flow like a procession, due to the long distance and time, the various activists of different physical abilities and health limitations, they were not able to keep up in any form of fixed and orderly formation with each other. Therefore it was physically not visible as a procession, this was what I witnessed and testified. And the Straits Times Reporter Mr. Jeremy Au Yong also testified the same, the police witnesses also have no conflict with these facts.

The prosecution then tried to submit on the new POA's (Public Order Act 2009) widened definitions on Procession, I asked the judge to disregard all these POA arguments as new legislation or changed legislation 2 years after 2007 can not retrospectively apply to the activity done 2 years before these new laws. Similarly appealed or abolished legislation cease to take effect after their abolishments.

I want to highlight to the Internet Community that famiLEE LEEgime failed entirely to provide any definition of Procession, just as well in the same act they had produced erroneous and invalid definition of area to charge opposition activists. In one case their definitions was done wrongly and in this case entirely omitted. ;-)

An assistant professor of law from NUS M/S Cheah Wei Ling was called by the High Court to offer her opinion in law and suggestions. Her conclusion as she told court was that the activists behaviors on 16. September 2007 did not fall into the category of activity as Misc Offenses Act and Rules was meant to forbid.

This was same as one of the points I had made today, that the Title of the Act is MOA (Public Order and Nuisance) which is obviously clear that anything that did not cause public order and nuisance concerns isn't what this law tried to address. The District Court already correctly found that the activities on 16. Sept.2007 was not of any public order and nuisance concern. It was a walk instead of a procession.


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