SPA: Due process must be followed in relocation of Registry of High Court of Sabah and Sarawak

David Hii Chin Loung

KUCHING, April 21: Sarawak Patriot Association (SPA) wants the federal government and the Sarawak government to explain the relocation of the Registry of the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak from Kuching to Kota Kinabalu effective May 1, 2019.

SPA echoed the same calls for an explanation following the recent announcement of the sudden relocation as the Registry of the High Court of Sabah and Sarawak had been located in Kuching since the formation of Malaysia.

Its secretary Hii Chin Loung in a statement said that the Federal Constitution of Malaysia is the supreme law in Malaysia with its existence to coordinate the governance of Malaysia and that its purpose is to create fair governance and prevent abuse of powers, to ensure the sustainability, peace and stability of Malaysia.

“Therefore, Article 121(4) of the Federal Constitution must be adhered to whereby in determining where the principal registry of the High Court in Sabah and Sarawak is to be, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall act on the advice of the Prime Minister, who shall consult the Chief Ministers of the States of Sabah and Sarawak and the Chief Judge of the High Court. This is also in line with Article 13(4) of the Malaysia Agreement 1963,” said Hii.

He however added that SPA has no qualms with the relocation provided that the due process of the law is followed.

“After all, Malaysia is a democratic nation which has a system of rule-by-law which protects the rights of citizens and limits the power of governments. However, we would also like to remind Putrajaya to ensure that the proper due process is followed in any of their decisions that affect Sabah and Sarawak.

“SPA therefore would like to urge the legal fraternities of both Sabah and Sarawak to remain united in light of this relocation as they have been the vanguards for advocating for the lost rights of both Sabah and Sarawak to reassert equal partner status and to ensure that the Malaysia Agreement 1963 is adhered to.

“On top of this SPA also urges the people of Sabah and Sarawak to remain united and to stand together in unity in pursuance of its goals to reclaim back the lost rights for both Sabah and Sarawak. If Putrajaya is sincere in restoring the equal partners’ status of Sabah and Sarawak, then surely it could be easily done like this relocation move. And if Putrajaya is sincere to restore the equal partnership between Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak, perhaps a separate High Court in Sabah and Sarawak, and the High Court in Malaya may be a good step forward, “ said Hii. — DayakDaily