Alcohol is actually not served at most Malaysian Bar events and is not even part of ticket prices imposed on all lawyers, a lawyer has clarified.
Amid a lawyer’s bid to end the serving of alcohol at Malaysian Bar events, Syahredzan Johan highlighted that these drinks would usually come sponsored or be paid by alcohol-drinkers.
“In Malaysian Bar events at the national level where there is alcohol, the alcohol is not paid at all from monetary contributions by Malaysian Bar members.
“It comes from sponsorship or is paid by those who wish to drink alcohol. Alcohol is not included in the ticket price for such events,” he wrote in a Facebook post today.
Syahredzan also clarified that alcohol would usually be served during the Malaysian Bar’s annual events, but would be absent in most of the events held by the professional body representing all lawyers in Peninsular Malaysia.
“In most of the Malaysian Bar programmes, there is not even a drop of alcohol served. Furthermore, in some states’ Bar, alcohol is not served at all during state-level annual dinners,” he said.
Syahredzan highlighted that liquor is not served at all at many of the Malaysian Bar’s events such as forums, annual general meetings, committee meetings or training sessions.
“So to give the impression that alcohol is the reason why many do not attend, as if all Bar events are filled with alcohol, is inaccurate and distorts reality,” he said.
He also pointed out that many lawyers who attend events where alcohol is served — such as the annual dinners — do not drink the liquor.
“It is up to them and if they are uncomfortable, they will not attend. Those who do not drink but have no problems with letting others drink, will attend,” he said.
Syahredzan’s comment comes after news reports on lawyer Mohd Amir Sharil Bahari Md Noor’s proposed motion for the Malaysian Bar’s 71st Annual General Meeting (AGM) this Saturday, as well as a Free Malaysia Today report on Muslim Lawyers Association of Malaysia president Datuk Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar claiming that many Muslim lawyers were reluctant to attend the Malaysian Bar’s annual events due to the serving of alcohol.
The lawyer better known as Amir Bahari had in his motion claimed that the serving of alcohol would unnecessarily boost the cost of an event by up to 40 per cent, also alleging that “all major religions” prohibit the consumption of alcohol.
Highlighting that excessive drinking of alcohol could result in harm and addiction, Amir Bahari said the intention of serving liquor in Malaysian Bar events is questionable, before proposing the professional body resolve to cease serving alcohol at all its functions.
In his election campaign last month for the Kuala Lumpur Bar committee chairman post, Amir Bahari had promised to “Islamise” and make the KL Bar Shariah-compliant by discontinuing the serving of alcohol at its events.
He had previously told Malay Mail Online that the serving of alcohol allegedly does not “reflect the culture of plural society”, asserting that the practice makes Muslim lawyers uncomfortable to attend such events and deters them from becoming more involved in the KL Bar.
One of the lawyers in Amir Bahari’s campaign team pulled out due to disagreement over his manifesto, saying that morality issues such as non-consumption of alcohol should not be forced on others. In the KL Bar AGM last month which had a historically high attendance, the state Bar members voted for lawyer Goh Siu Lin to be their chairman.
Amir Bahari’s proposed motion is one of six motions that is expected to be debated at the Malaysian Bar’s AGM this week, with four of them focusing on issues such as deaths in police custody, laws allowing detention without trial and the Orang Asli community’s land rights.
Source : @ Malay Mail Online