PLAC – where the poor can seek justice


Penang was the first to set up a Legal Advisory Centre in Malaysia. Today, such centres are found in every state on the peninsula. PLAC remains independent in funding, and its lawyers work for free to help the poorer segment of Malaysian society.

The first time I met Teh Chin Lee, I noted that he wasn’t like most clients who typically marched into the office. He didn’t have the kind of swagger most of them had. Dressed in a plaid shirt, Teh had his head bowed slightly as he greeted everyone in the office, including myself and the clerks, which was an unusual thing for clients to do. Clutched close to his chest was a pink plastic bag containing the documents of his case.

When I speak to him on the phone, however, he’s got a different air; he’s much more agitated. “I do not know the law, but I know I have been cheated by the developer.” After a bit of prodding, he divulges his story to me.

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