Hornbill Unleashed

August 2, 2017

Sarawak rapped for not backing Malanjum for chief justice’s post

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM

Image result for Richard MalanjumOpposition leaders have said Richard Malanjum, as the most senior Federal Court judge, should have been promoted to the post of chief justice.

THE Sarawak government is under fire for not backing Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Richard Malanjum for the top judicial post, following Chief Justice Md Raus Sharif’s controversial term extension.

Opposition leaders have, in recent weeks, voiced their support for Malanjum, the most senior among the current Federal Court judges, to take over from Raus, whose term was originally set to end on Thursday.

Sarawak DAP leader Chong Chieng Jen said local parties were deferring to Umno.

“If the Sarawak Barisan Nasional government does not even have the courage to stand up against the sidelining of… Malanjum, what confidence can we have that the state government is fighting for autonomy against the federal Umno-BN government?

“Under the leadership of (Chief Minister) Abang Johari (Openg), all talk about ‘fighting for Sarawak autonomy’ is a mere illusion,” he said in a statement today.

Malanjum, a Sabahan, is the nation’s fourth highest-ranked judge. The 64-year-old will retire as chief judge of Sabah and Sarawak in October.

According to the term limit provisions in the Federal Constitution, Raus would be set to retire on Thursday, upon reaching the age of 66 years and six months.

“Since the formation of Malaysia, there has never been a judge from Sabah or Sarawak appointed as the chief justice,” said Chong.

He said “such a track record runs counter to the spirit of equal partnership” among the three regions, and rendered the judiciary of Sabah and Sarawak as “subordinate to its counterpart in the peninsula”.

“Sarawak BN still has less than 48 hours to redeem itself and convince Sarawakians that it has the guts and principle to stand up against its political master, Umno.”

Opposition leaders have said Malanjum, as the most senior Federal Court judge, should have been promoted to the post of chief justice.

On July 7, the government extended the services of Raus and Court of Appeal president Zulkefli Makinudin to three and two years, respectively.

They were appointed as additional judges to keep them in office beyond the age limit of 66 years and six months, pursuant to Article 122(1A) of the Federal Constitution.

The Malaysian Bar, Sabah Law Association and Advocates’ Association of Sarawak have condemned the term extensions, saying they were unconstitutional and had caused further erosion of public confidence in the judiciary.

The Malaysian Bar, which has 16,500 members, is set to hold an extraordinary general meeting in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, where the term extensions, and the judiciary’s integrity and independence, will be discussed.

Source : The Malaysian Insight by



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