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Thursday, July 22, 2010



A friend once asked me why I like so much watching 22 half naked man chasing after the same small round object on a field? Well I think any answer won't satisfy this chair-leg (kaki bangku) type of person. The first ever World Cup final I watched was great. Watching the likes of Rumenigge, Matthaus, Toni Schumacher and co. lost to Maradona, Burruchaga, Pumpido and co. in the final of World Cup 1986 has sparked my keen interest in football in general and the German team in particular.

That same feeling was also there since I started going to "stadium keramat" Stadium Sultan Mohd ke 4 since my primary schooldays. It was an unforgettable experience to be part of the crowd witnessing the great Kelantan team with the likes of Hashim Mustapha, Marko Kraljevic, Boonphop Praphut, Zahasmi Ismail, Dalini Dali and so many more great players mesmerizing the crowds and in some other times playing not so great.

Back to the future in 2010 my interest to the game is still the same if not more. It has also spilled over to my kids though their heroes now are the likes of Lampard, Torres, Kaka and Messi. So what has World Cup 2010 given to us? It has certainly change our time zone for a month. Transforming us to be lively (mata celik) like Batman after midnight and looks like zombie kampung pisang in the morning (also in court).

On the good side, now some us know that we actually can wake up for tahajjud, albeit it started as jabulani tahajjud but of course we can upgrade it to a real tahajjud after the world cup. It also helps to ensure some of us to pray subuh prayer on time (a.s.a.p once we hear azan) as compared to mammoth or godzilla or "ngam-ngam" subuh prayer time. Its also good to see some non-football fans started to talk and eat football, although majority unsurprisingly decided to support Spain or at least Holland. We can call them "mee segera" fans or "lalang" fans.

There are some annoying and irritating features in the World Cup. Firstly, is definitely the "sakitkan telinga dan hati" vuvuzela that made me watch games in a low volume mode to prevent my ears from any damage. Secondly, the belief that many (Muslims included) had put on an ordinary octopus named Paul. This "sotong" shouldn't have been so popular as he correctly predicted most of the games as it actually choses which flag which is brighter in colour (this theory I do believe).

Thirdly, was the way some referees showing cards for contacts that weren't fouls. They should be refereeing chess or monopoly if they continue to do that. Also, I view some negativities like simulations to earn penalty (David Villa of all people did it v Paraguay), play-acting (remember Rivaldo 2002 v Turkey?) and wrestling or kungfu style football (De Jong landing a beautiful front thrust kick on Xabi Alonso).

But let's not forget i't is still a beautiful game to watch. Although the Germans are refreshing with the exuberance of youth and so un-Germans that they play like Brazillians (old Brazillians actually). England are still as boring and overrated as ever (goal line technology won't help to win the World Cup). And it is nice to see some non-favorite teams like Uruguay, Ghana and Paraguay emerged to give a breath of fresh air to the usual suspects.

Learning from Spain's win, we can learn that patience, organisation, team work and persistence works and the reward is the cup itself. We also learn to be dirty or ultra agressive like Felipo Melo and Mark van Bommel doesn't work. Furthermore, poster boys like Ronaldo, Rooney, Kaka and the like normally will succumb to pressure and will not perform on the big stage. Teamwork as evidence in Spain, Germany and Uruguay is a far more potent weapon than individual flair and talent as what happened to mighty Argentina, Brazil and England.

Well, the World Cup 2010 has been a great experience and come Brazil 2014, may the best team with the best performance and attitude win the game. As for football fans, stay loyal with your team be it the not so great anymore Brazil, the exciting Germany, the old England or even the super efficient (and boring) Spain. Don't be a frog. It's politically and morally wrong. Wassalam.

Friday, July 9, 2010



The submission stage in a criminal trial is the most eagerly awaited stage in a criminal trial. Here, all the efforts put in by the parties, all the evidence (or drama) that has transpired throughout the trial will be compressed, zip filed and reduced to a mere 30 minutes script reading or tongue lashing by the judge or even sometimes a one line sentence like "hujahan saya adalah seperti keterangan, Yang Arif".

Due to the KPI-phobia, recently the time frame to prepare for a submission has dwindled from weeks to a matter of minutes. Some KPI obsessed judges demand submission to be done on the spot after the case closed. Some even ridiculed lawyers who opt for oral submission due to time constraint, while they themselves only allow less than 24 hours for preparation. Apart from Paul the Nostradamus octopus; my current most hated thing is definitely KPI. It pressured all parties unnecessarily, has slowly removed judicial discretion and transforming justice and performance of officers to statistical yardstick.

Back on a more serious note, one aspect that is crucial and worth knowing for before a submission is to get to know beforehand what is the judge's preferences in a submission. Whether he incline to hear it orally or typewritten in full or in a skeleton mode or maybe in the future in a thumb drive mode or burned CD mode. Next to ponder is whether the judge is a very patient one (like Spain playing passing football until everybody fells asleep) or the not so patient or temperamental one (like Maradona).

This is pertinent as it can happen that we have prepared a full text version (something like 72 pages) and on the day itself the judge just merely brushed aside the thick documents that we have painstakingly prepared and politely say "tak payah la semua ni awak ringkaskan saja hujahan awak ya". On the other hand, it may occur also that we prepare a skeleton notes or even just an oral submission but in the end pissed the judge and get scolded for being plain lazy or not helping the court or "tidak bertanggungjawab dalam menegakkan keadilan dan mempertahankan anak guam awak yang nyawanya di tangan awak".

For a patient and composed judges, we might stretch a little bit in advancing our arguments. We can take longer time, repeat important points and even make some not so brilliant jokes during submission. As for the other species of judges, it might be advisable just to be short and sweet, not to be adamant in our argument and preferably avoid any head on collisions with him. Furthermore, it is advisable to prepare text written submission when appearing before these judges as there is likelihood that some part of your oral submission may not form part of the court's record should the judge become annoyed or irritated.

Some judges just obediently listen and jot down every argument canvassed by the parties however irrelevant or unconvincing the points may be. Whereas, some judges may get involved in the submission battle themselves as they like to engage the party who submit head on (want to be gladiator-berjuang di medan perang also la). That is why some submissions stretch to days because the judge is so busy rebutting and replying to every line in the counsel's submission and the learned DPP may then just simply adopt the judge's "submission" because everything has been covered by the judge.

These human aspects or personal touch in preparing our submission is not found in law books and neither to be taught or spoonfeed by superiors. It comes through own experience and observation as well as interaction with the personnels in courts. One can always get first hand information about the judge that will help in giving an effective submission, just by being friendly in court and having respect to others whatever rank they are. Wassalam.