More random posting.
I'm sitting here in the PJ Magistrate Court with nothing much to do while waiting for 9am and for things to begin. So, I blog :P
Oh, and while I'm at it, I should mention that I wrote a perfectly good review blog last week BUT my Blogger app did a boo-boo and half of it has disappeared. Long story. Anyhow, not having saved my draft thinking it was all good and published, I have to put it together once more. Hang in there, it's coming, it's coming...
The trip to court today was a spur of the moment thing - I didn't plan to tag along but since one of my colleagues needed company, here I am.. haha. Thank goodness for good ol' pen, paper (for drafting.. I'm trying to preserve my phone's battery), and my ever faithful Galaxy S. What would we do to pass time if there was no internet on-the-go?
It's only my second time sitting in on mentions altho' I have waited outside a few times. This court, Mahkamah Majistret 5, is a pretty small space. You've got the magistrate's bench, interpreter's table, prosecutors/defence's desk (probably fits 6 people), long seat behind it, witness and accused stands, and another row of seats for those waiting about (namely, me). It's air-conditioned, has mic and speakers which is good coz it's darn hot in KL and I can barely hear some of these people without the PA system. Oh oh, don't forget the CCTVs too.
There are a few things to note about court:
- The Magistrate is 'da Boss' in their court room
- Black and white formal clothing is essential for the Prosecuting Officers (PO) and Defense Lawyers
- Witnesses and the public who are there to observe are exempted from the 'black & white' rule, but your attire must be decent (a girl wearing a rather lacy/see-thru blouse was shoo'd out of the court room by the Magistrate the last time I was there... yikes! total embarrassment...)
- Make sure your phone is off or totally silent
- Don't sit with your legs crossed - you'll be subtly reprimanded by the guards
- Everytime the Magistrate comes in or out, stand and bow as a sign of respect. Actually, I've observed that if someone inside the court wishes to leave while the Magistrate is still there, they would bow in her direction just before leaving the room.
- The officers will always begin by saying "dengan izin Tuan/Puan" (with your permission Sir/Madam)
I suspect there are still lots of things which I don't know and have yet to learn about etiquette at court. The good thing about tagging along is that I'll get more exposure and pick up bits along the way. The not so good part is that they (my more senior officers) would think that I know stuff and ask me to mention a case at some point in the future *gulp*. That thought totally freaks me out.
You're probably wondering why we're in court anyway. I mean, we're not lawyers right? Wrong! Pharmacists do everything. Lol. Yes, a number of us will investigate certain offences contravening our Acts (usually those related to advertisement of meds or devices with medical claims without approval, adulterated/ unregistered products, etc) and therefore, we are the ones to bring the cases to court.
Damn. And here I was thinking that a pharmacist's main role is to dispense medication and educate patients. How was I to guess that one day I may have to be a PO?
Life is weird and unexpected.
We've just been informed that the Magistrate is in a meeting. Oh well, we'll just have to wait then won't we? ;)
Signing off now. Til next time, adieu.