Sunday, March 7, 2021

Anwar files bid to refer questions on emergency proclamation to Federal Court

The questions include whether the advice given to the king to suspend Parliament is subject to ouster clauses and reviewable in court.

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PKR chief Anwar Ibrahim has filed an application to refer several questions to the Federal Court pertaining to his judicial review over the government’s decision to advise the king to declare an emergency proclamation.

The questions posed for the High Court to consider referring to the Federal Court include whether the decision to give advice and/or the advice given by Cabinet led by the prime minister to the king to suspend Parliament is subject to the ouster clauses in Article 150 of the Federal Constitution.

The second question is whether the decision to give the advice and/or the advice given by the Cabinet led by the prime minister to the king to suspend Parliament is reviewable by the courts.

Anwar also wants the court to decide whether Section 39(2) of the Malaysia Act 1963, Section 15(d) of the Constitutional (Amendment) Act 1981, and Articles 150 (6) and (8) of the Federal Constitution are inconsistent and/or in contravention to Articles 4, 5, 8 and 121(1) of the Federal Constitution.

He is also seeking for the court to determine whether the inherent jurisdiction of the courts, including the powers of review in relation to procedure, can be completely inhibited/ousted by the legislature.

In a statement, Anwar’s lawyer Ramkarpal Singh said having regard to the urgency of the matter particularly since Parliament is now suspended, he has also filed a certificate of urgency for the matter to be heard as soon as possible.

“I am of the view that the questions raised above ought to be decided by the Federal Court,” he said.

Anwar, the Port Dickson MP, filed for leave to commence a judicial review in the High Court on Jan 25 naming the prime minister and the government as respondents.

Anwar, 74, sought a declaration that a Cabinet decision chaired by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin that advised the king to declare an emergency which caused the suspension of Parliament was unlawful, unconstitutional, invalid and ineffective.

He sought a certiorari order to nullify the decision by the respondents to give the said advice to the king.

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