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Pak Lah: Release of detainees good

KUALA LUMPUR, 5 April 2009: Former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has lauded his successor Datuk Seri Najib Razak for releasing 13 Internal Security Act (ISA) detainees.

“It is good decision. A good move. I am sure the time has come for them to be released, so he released them,” he told reporters after attending a tree-planting ceremony by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin and Raja Pemaisuri Agong Tuanku Nur Zahirah at Taman Bukit Kiara here.

The ceremony, held in conjunction with the Kiara-Our Forest programme, was also attended by the royal couple’s four princes and princesses.

Najib announced in his maiden speech on Friday night that the 13 detainees would be released and that the ISA – which was created by the British to crack down on communist insurgents – would be reviewed.

The ISA violates human rights because it allows for indefinite detention without trial by the state.

Earlier, Abdullah and wife Tun Jeanne Abdullah arrived at the function in a self-driven sports utility vehicle.

When asked if it would be against safety protocol for him to drive to official functions instead of being chauffeured, he quipped, “I’m a good driver.”

He added that now that he had retired, he would have the luxury of driving around more often. — Bernama

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