Sherrie Ab. Razak: I’ll Speak Up For The Little People

Posted on February 25, 2010

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Extracts from a Facebook message interview by Muhammad Yunus with Khaizan Sharizad Ab. Razak (Sherrie), 24 February 2010.

Sherrie was recently voted in as the Committee Member at the KL Bar AGM which took place on Tuesday the 23rd of February 2010. She was the Deputy Chief Adjudicator at the 3rd World Universities Peace Invitational Debate (WUPID) 2009. She is a lawyer, a humanitarian and most importantly a very good friend – congratulations, Sherrie!

The questions were written and answered in English.

MY Hi Sherrie. Congratulations on your recent appointment as the Committee Member of the KL Bar. Other than your DCA-ship at the GEMS World Universities Peace Invitational Debate last December, what are the other works that you’ve done which you feel contributory to people voting you within the committee?

SR Well, I have been active doing work for the Malaysian Bar and currently i am serving several committees namely KL Bar Environmental and Humanities Committee, the KL Bar Social Arts and Culture Committee and the KL Bar Young Lawyers Committee. I am also a Co-Chair of the Person’s With Disabilities Working Group of the Bar Council Human Rights Committee, the KL representative to the National Young Lawyers Committee, Bar Council and a Legal Aider which assist the KL Bar Legal Aid Committee. One of which I was the Organising Chairperson for the Inaugral Bar Council Human Rights Debate in 2008.

Other than that, on the personal side I am also one part of the S-Ploited which consist of myself and Seira Sacha. Although, the S-Ploited projects are mostly organizing socials activities which involves photography and we directed one of the 3 winning film documentary for the Freedom Film Festival 2009 which was No Silver Lining: The Perak Crisis.

MY Goodness me! Where the heck do you find the time doing all this? I could swear to God you’re running on Viagra.

SR Hahahaa..i’m not running on Viagra. i’m living life. Most of the time people whine that they don’t have much time, they didn’t contribute much in their life, they don’t have the opportunity or etc. It’s all about making choices, multi tasking and time management. You don’t have to do everything at one shot and you will have to prioritize what is necessary and urgent.

Well, i personally believe that no one is stopping you to be better or to do anything. It’s all making the time and effort. If you don’t do it, it’s merely making excuses and trying hard to justify your reasons for not wanting to do something or anything. It may sound simplistic but it is true if you think about it. Although i will need to add that passion also plays a part of everything I do. That keeps me going all the time. Plus the crowd that i’m surrounded with doing all the work that i do. They are bunch of hyper bunnies themselves. Very motivating and inspirational. You need that when the time gets tough. Everything is not all nice and dandy all the time.

MY Passion and good friends – I cannot agree more. The real reason why people grind to a halt is because whenever there’s a nip up their bottom, they start to whine or start talking to a goldfish.

The US government tells us that jury service is ‘rewarding and fair’. But ‘bloody nuisance’ is probably nearer the mark. Being a committee member, what are your thoughts on that?

SR I believe jury trial were abolished since January 1995. Well, i could understand why they said jury service is ‘rewarding and fair’. It could mean that every lay person who is a citizen in this country would participate in the justice system and be a part of the transparency of the judiciary and exercise of justice.

But ‘bloody nuisance’ would mean that the same lay person who participate in the jury trial may not be well equipped with legal knowledge and procedures of the law. This would also mean that trial process will take longer for the juries to deliberate and for the judges to take the time and effort to explain the legal procedures and jargons. This would also mean backlog of cases. Then, there is issue of cost. To summon 12 jurors and to sequest them will need more money. There is also the issue of protection of the jurors. Jurors can be subjected to bribery, harassment, intimidation, threats to themselves and their families, damage to property, and suffer stress, anxiety, fear, sleeplessness, and disruption of their lives. The police have to provide protection. If the matter comes to the attention of the judge he discharges the jury and orders a retrial, all involving a waste of time and money and imposing a burden on the witnesses. All of these are factors to be considered.

MY Do you personally think that parents being so irresponsible that you make your children or pets obese is absolutely reprehensible and deserving of punishment?

SR Well, that’s a moral dilemma and moral is always subjective. Should parents also be responsible and deserve a punishment for having aneroxic lookalike child or pets!hahahaa..

It’s a matter of perspective. If a parent abandoned the welfare of their child eg providing them shelter, food and education, the state would come in and take a role to be the guardian and provide the necessaries but not punishing the parents. It’s undeniable that obese children would have health and psychological risks but there is a danger of setting up such standard of what should be the standard to raise a child or having a perfect child.

It should never be about perfection but how to overcome imperfection and make the best out of it. You may be obese but if you are happy with your weight and it doesn’t inflict harm to you or others, then why is there the need to please the public perception of what is perfect or ideal in their mind.

MY Glad to notice that our legal fraternity is in good hands (Can’t say about the rest of the gang though – hehehehe). After having said all that, as committee member, what are your plans for the practice and the community it serves?

SR I will definitely try my best to serve the KL Bar members regardless which portfolio that i will have to undertake for the next one year. But what i hope to see is more participation of lawyers especially the young lawyers to contribute in the KL Bar. Perhaps I will plan activities which caters and better suited to the current demand of the legal fraternity especially in KL.

For more information of what the Kuala Lumpur Bar does, please check out their website here.

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