The ISA Advisory Board sat from 6 to 8 November in the Supreme Court chambers of Justice Chao Hick Tin to review the cases of the 18 persons detained in September under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for terrorism-related activities.
The Advisory Board is appointed by the President in consultation with the Chief Justice under Article 151(2) of the Constitution of Singapore. It heard the representations of detainees and examined ISD officers and statements of witnesses, and reviewed the evidence and investigation. The Board is chaired by Justice Chao Hick Tin, and consist of two other members, Mr Henry Chan Wah Tim, a businessman and Dr Chook Kum Kay, a medical doctor in private practice.
The Advisory Board is required by law to sit within three months of the issue of the order of detention to consider the detainee's representation. The detainees have the right of representation to the Board either directly or with legal counsel of their choice.
The 18 detainees have been informed of their detention and the allegations against them. They have been given regular access to family members and legal counsel. They have also been visited by members of a Board of Inspection made up of leaders from community and civic groups to inquire into their well-being.
Of the detainees, 8 chose to make representations:
a) Four made oral representations to the Board. They are Naharudin bin Sabtu, Nordin bin Parman, Mahfuh bin Haji Halimi and Husin bin Ab Aziz;
b) One of them, Husin bin Ab Aziz, was represented by lawyer P Padman of KS Chia Gurdeep & Param;
c) Four decided to submit written representations. They are Azman bin Jalani, Sanin bin Riffin, Mohd Noor bin Sulaimi and Faiz bin Abdullah Ashiblie.
The Advisory Board also reviewed the cases of the remaining 10 detainees.
Following its review, the Advisory Board will submit its findings and recommendations to the President. After considering the Board's recommendations, the President will then direct the Minister for Home Affairs on the detention or release of the detained person. Where the Board recommends the release of the detained person, the person shall not be detained or further detained without the Presidents concurrence.
The Advisory Board is required to review every ISA detention case at intervals of not more than 12 months from the date of the detainees last representation. An Order of Detention cannot exceed a period of 2 years. At the end of the period, if the preventive detention of the person is still warranted, an application must be made to renew the Order afresh. The same process of independent review by the Advisory Board will apply.
Ministry of Home Affairs
28 November 2002