PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s attempt to challenge the Pardons Board following the rejection of his royal pardon application will be brought before the Federal Court, the Court of Appeal ruled today.
A three-member bench led by Justice Datuk Rohana Yusuf ruled that questions of law posed by Anwar regarding the justiciability of the Pardons Board’s decision should be heard by the Federal Court, the highest court in the country.
The court also set aside the High Court’s dismissal of Anwar’s leave application to challenge the Pardons Board’s decision pending the Federal Court hearing on the questions of law.
The Federal Court will now decide if the decision of a Pardons Board can be challenged in court, Anwar’s lawyer N Surendran said today following the decision.
Anwar’s family filed the application for a royal pardon shortly after he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment for sodomy, but this was rejected.
On June 25, 2015, he filed a challenge against the Pardons Board’s decision, but the High Court last year dismissed the attempt on the grounds that the board’s rulings cannot be reviewed as it was bound by previous Federal Court decisions.
However, Surendran argued that the previous challenges against the Pardons Board decisions did not take into account Article 40 (1A) of the Federal Constitution, which states that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is bound to accept the advice of the Pardons Board.
The article in question came into force via an amendment to the constitution in 1994.
Surendran submitted that due to the constitutional provision, the Pardons Board has a decision making process of its own before advice is offered to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
Senior Federal Counsel Suzana Atan, acting on behalf of the government, Attorney General’s Chambers and the Pardons Board, argued that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was the final arbiter of the board’s decisions, which he said made its rulings incontestable.
Source : RAM ANAND @ The Malay Mail Online