GPS reaffirms stand over relocation of Sabah-Sarawak High Court Registry

(From left) See, Sharifah Hasidah and Abdullah addressing a press conference to reiterate their stand against federal's decision to relocate the Sabah and Sarawak High Court Registry.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, Nov 13: The Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) government has reaffirmed its stand against the relocation of the Sabah and Sarawak High Court Registry from the state capital to Kota Kinabalu.

Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Corporate Affairs and Sarawak Public Communications Unit) Abdullah Saidol said GPS wanted to show solidarity and give full support to Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How’s emergency motion to reaffirm the State Legislative Assembly’s (DUN) decision against relocating the Registry.

However it was was rejected by speaker Datuk Amar Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar on technical reasons.

“From GPS, we share the same concern with YB See in his motion and we equally support and concur.

“We show our solidarity and as part of the legal fraternity, we also reject the relocation of the Registry to Sabah, not withstanding that the motion was rejected,” he told a press conference at the Media Room at the DUN Complex today.

Assistant Minister of Law, State-Federal Relations and Project Monitoring Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali and See were present.

Sharifah Hasidah reiterated that under Article 121(4) of the Malaysia Constitution, consultation must be made with the state government before making a decision on the relocation of the Registry.

“The state government has voiced out and expressed our views, as well as our stand, to the federal that we disagree with the relocation of the Registry.

“The decision was that of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong who acted upon the advise of the Prime Minister (Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad). Decision has been made so we respect the decision,” she said.

See was happy to have the support from the GPS members even though a similar motion was passed with unanimous decision in the DUN Sitting on April 30, this year.

“It shows that when it comes to the right of Sarawak, all of us are together whether in opposition or in the government,” he said.

See tabled the motion this morning following a meeting yesterday between the Chief Registrar of the Federal Court of Malaysia, senior members of the judiciary and Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to obtain Sarawak’s consent to the impending relocation of the Sabah and Sarawak High Court Registry, effective Nov 15.

He said the motion was to protect the sanctity of the Federal Constitution and safeguard Sarawak’s inviolable constitutional rights.

However, Asfia explained that under Standing Order 15 (2), the motion should be submitted 24 hours before the day’s sitting.

“The motion touches on the interests of Sarawak and is a very good motion. Much as I would like it to be debated, because of the constraint requirement of 24 hours, I regret that I have to disallow the motion,” he said.

Kota Sentosa assemblyman Chong Chieng Jen urged Asfia to suspend the 24-hour requirement in view of the motion’s importance.

See also said the requirement could be waived if Asfia sanctioned it and the august House agreed.

Asfia replied that since the DUN had already approved a similar motion on April 30, it was out of order for the House to reconsider unless it was to rescind the earlier decision. — DayakDaily