Doing What You Know: Moving the Call of Lew Chui Ying

A reproduction of the approximate speech I had the honour of delivering on the occasion of Ms. Lew Chui Ying’s call to the Bar on 7 November 2009.

My Lord,

Anthony Robbin’s once said, ‘It’s not knowing what to do, but doing what you know’. He had no idea how appropriate it applied to the Petitioner before you this morning. She claims that she didn’t know what to do with herself. But clearly when left to her own devices, she did what she knew. And that was to excel at what she enjoyed.

Not long after her parents Mr. Lew Nam Sam and Madam Teh Siew Hua unleashed her the Petitioner proceeded to do just that. She was the President of the Prefect Board of the Tsun Jin High School for the term 2001/2002. In that term she won the Outstanding Student of the Year. She was a Scout Master of the Kuen Cheng Scout Group since 2003 and still remains one. The Petitioner still helps out the younger scouts to organize training camps, lead troop members and nurture future scout leaders. Clearly the Petitioner is not only someone who thrives on challenges, responsibility and possess a natural flair for leadership; she is what we loyarburok would call a goody two shoes with a steely resolve.

The Petitioner completed her Bachelor of Laws at the University of Tasmania in true Malaysian fashion by getting it for free. She could do this because she won back to back scholarships; a KDU scholarship for her twinning in Malaysia and a Tasmania International Scholarship for her final year in Tasmania in 2006. I would submit that the Petitioner is a natural fee earner.

Thereafter she completed her CLP and commenced her pupillage in Messrs. Zain & Co. under the guidance of Ms. Kok Su Ann whose top 2 phrases to the Petitioner were ‘be more legalistic’ and ‘think out of the box’. My Lord, though these advice appear contradictory to each other they will stand her in good stead because – the Petitioner will be receiving such contradictory instructions from her future clients soon enough!

When I asked her how she felt about the law, she wrote, ‘Some people think that law is about money-making. … However, practising law should not be ALL about making money. Otherwise, one will be easily influenced by the dark side of the profession and the law will simply become the tools of making money and without anything else. The law should be viewed as something for everyone, not just for the rich or corporations.’ This is indicative of her good character and demonstrates a meaningful appreciation of the law. Though she may not have heard the call of the law, she more than meets its requirements.

The Petitioner would like to thank her Master, everybody at Zain & Co., her thoroughly supportive parents and her 4 sisters and 2 brothers for their patience, compassion and encouragement. She wants them to know whatever they do does not go unnoticed. So we had best be careful about what we do and say around the Petitioner.

I believe the Petitioner’s cause papers are in order. I submit she possesses good character to be a fit and proper person to be called the Bar. I believe my learned friends have no objection (and even if they do, they have not filed their skeletal submissions). I humbly pray for the Petitioner, Lew Chui Ying, to be admitted and enrolled as an Advocate and Solicitor to the Rolls of the High Court.

Fahri Azzat enjoys eating ice kacang on a sweltering hot day. He thinks that not enough ice kacang vendors pay enough attention to the bottom composition. The usual stuff they put is the kidney beans, cincau, cendol and corn. He thinks that the bottom should be tackled more creatively and more abundantly. He advocates the use of buah gabung, banana slices, raisins, the use of more jelly, cincau and cendol,  a sliver of rectancular sugar cubes, and the use of more fruits in ice kacang.


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Fahri Azzat practices the dark arts of the law. Although he enjoys writing and reading, he doesn't enjoy writing his own little biographies of himself. Like this one. He wished somebody else would do it for him. He has little taste in writing about himself in third person. He feels weird doing it. But the part he finds most tedious is having to pad up the lack of his accomplishments, or share some interesting facts about his rather uneventful life, as if there were some who found that oh-so-interesting; as if he were some famous person, like Michael Jackson. When he writes these biographies, the thought, 'Wei, Jangan Perasaan- ah!' lights up in his head. So he usually just lists what he got involved with, positions he held and blah, blah. But this time. Right here. Right this very moment. Uhuh. This one. This one right here. He's finally telling it like it is.

Posted on 24 July 2011. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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