Monday, December 15, 2008

Does The Attorney-General Know What He Is Doing? Sarawak & Sabah Ignored Yet Again By The BN Federal Government!

JAC Bill Ignores Sarawak, Sabah's Constitutional Rights, Claims DAP

KUCHING, Dec 14 (Bernama) -- The DAP today claimed that the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) Bill if passed will infringe the constitutional rights of Sabah and Sarawak.

Making it clear that DAP wanted the Bill tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi recently, to be further scrutinised, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said Sabah and Sarawak's rights would be affected if due consideration is not given to Articles 122B and 161E(2)(b).

"These two articles in the Federal Constitution serve to preserve, protect and promote the rights of Sabah and Sarawak over the appointment, removal and suspension of judges of the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak," he said at the 14th DAP Sarawak annual convention here Sunday.

"In other words, Sabah and Sarawak rights are not consulted or taken into account as required under the Federal Consititution as agreed to when Sabah and Sarawak joined to form Malaysia in 1963," he added.

Later in the news conference, Lim explained that the bill will overide the power of the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of the respective states in term of appointment, promotion and suspension of judges.

Lim proposed that a separate committee that took into account the interest of Sabah and Sarawak should be formed in line with the Federal Constitution to ensure that the constitutional rights of both states were protected and at the same time ensure that the power to appoint judges should not rest solely in the hands of the Prime Minister.

-- BERNAMA

9 comments:

joefernandez@fernz said...

Putatan MP Datuk Dr Marcus Mojigoh has compiled the views of various bodies in Sabah about the effects on the state’s constitutional position as a result of the proposed Judicial Appointments Commission Bill and will be raising these in Parliament along with his brother MPs from the state and Sarawak.

“We have some reservations about the Bill,” said Dr Mojigoh, also the UPKO Treasurer-General, when commenting on public statements on the Bill by, among others, Sabah Justices of the Peace and DAP.

DAP secretary-general and Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng issued a statement in Kuching yesterday alleging that the JAC Bill, if passed will infringe on the constitutional rights of Sabah and Sarawak. Lim proposed that a separate committee be established to take into consideration the rights of Sabah and Sarawak under the Federal Constitution before the JAC Bill is passed.

Meanwhile, the Sabah JPs (Justices of the Peace) have reiterated that the proposed Judicial Appointment (JAC) Bill, tabled by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in Parliament on Wed 10 Dec 2008, is “unconstitutional, null and void” with or without specific reference to Sabah and Sarawak.

“The proposed legislation runs contrary to Article 4, Article 122B and Article 161E (2) (b) of the Federal Constitution,” said Dr Lawrence Thien Shin Hing, secretary-general of the Sabah Justices of the Peace Council (Majaps), going into specifics. “The JAC is not a constitutional amendment bill but only an Act of Parliament, an ordinary legislation compared to the Federal Constitution which is the supreme law of the Federation of Malaysia.”

Article 4 refers: “Any law passed after Merdeka day which is inconsistent with the Federal Constitution is unconstitutional, null and void.”

Under Article 122B of the Federal Constitution, a person is appointed a judge by the Yang Di Pertuan Agong, acting on the advice of the Prime Minister, after consulting the Conference of Rulers. Before tendering such advice on the appointment of a judge under Clause (1) of a judge, the Prime Minister shall consult, if the appointment is to one of the High Courts, the Chief Judge of that Court. (Malaysia has two High Court systems i.e. the High Court of Malaya and the High Court of Borneo, now the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak, and both have separate jurisdictions.)

The Sabah JPs contend that the proposed new procedure under the JAC would be a direct departure from the present mode “and in direct conflict with Article 122B of the Federal Constitution”. The main task of the JAC is to make recommendations to the Prime Minister on the candidates to be appointed as judges or on the promotion of sitting judges to a higher court. “The proposed new Commission will therefore be a new body whose recommendations the Prime Minister must adhere to before the name of a candidate can be submitted to the Yang Di Pertuan Agong for appointment as a judge,” sais Dr Thien, in expressing the concerns of the legal community in Malaysian Borneo on the proposed JAC Bill before Parliament.

Again, within the context of Sabah and Sarawak, Dr Thien noted that the proposed new mode runs contrary to Article 161E(2) (b) which states:

(a) No amendment shall be made to the Constitution without the concurrence of the Yang Di Pertua Negeri of the State of Sabah or Sarawak or each of the states of Sabah and Sarawak concerned, if the amendment is such as to affect the operation of the Constitution as regards any of the following matters:
(b) The Constitution and jurisdiction of the High Court in Sabah and Sarawak and the appointment, removal and suspension of the judges of that Court.

Dr Thien stressed that the JAC will definitely affect the appointment mode of judges for the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak.

“The proposed legislation will therefore be directly in conflict not only specifically with Article 161E (2( (b) in so far as it is related to the appointment of judges to the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak but also directly in conflict with Article 4 and Article 122B of the Federal Constitution,” said Dr Thien. “No one might challenge the conflict with Article 122B of the Federal Constitution and therefore if it (the JAC) is allowed to proceed and in relation to Sabah and Sarawak, it will mean that the proposed Act is made to circumvent Article 161E (2) (b).”

“The issue therefore is: the two states should protect their Constitutional safeguards.”

In short, the objectives of the Judicial Appointment Commission Bill are an exercise in futility since there are no relevant and related Constitutional amendments being pursued. Even so, warned Dr Thien, several Constitutional amendments were passed by Parliament in recent years without any reference being made, as required, to Article 161E of the Federal Constitution, and which amendments had and continue to have, an impact on the constitutional positions of Sabah and Sarawak.

Dr Thien urged the state governments of Sabah and Sarawak, legislators in both states and the legal community to fully engage in the debate on the JAC Bill pending in Parliament.

tunabdulrazak said...

Nothing from Sarawak yet. Either our MPs are stupid, ignorant or damned scared.Perhaps all the three negative qualities?

jumpover said...

Our dayaks mp !!...where u all ? Wake up please....times to go to school .

tunabdulrazak said...

The Attorney-General knows exactly what he is doing, i.e. executing the Divide And Rule Script.

romerz said...

Typical arrogance from peninsular Malaysia or should I rephrase it appropriately, Putrajaya.

Like everything else, all the government cares about is UMNO's continued rule. All else is secondary.

Well you guys in Sarawak will have first go at the status quo through state polls next year. Please send them a LOUD LOUD shout! Make them pee in their pants so that UMNO will implode scrambling over each other!

By the way headhunter, I've added you to my blogroll. Hope you don't mind.

DeePo said...

mula2 sikit2, lama2 jadi bukit.

then, 18-points of agreement will bye2.

jumpover said...

Where's our "Bubur Nasi"yb....?
You all cannot speaks kah???

Hopeless...

Ay said...

Where is our MPs ? Do they know what is going on ? Keep quiet again.

Anonymous said...

Dayaks people should stop supporting BN party, because BN is control by UMNO and UMNO is control by racist people and Malays gangster !!!