JOHOR BAHRU: The High Court here has again dismissed a leave application for judicial review of the Emergency proclamation to suspend Parliament and state legislative assemblies.
The bid by Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Abdul Karim was the third such challenge to be thrown out by the courts.
Judicial commissioner Evrol Mariette Peters said the court did not have jurisdiction on the matter.
Hassan’s legal team in a statement said the court in essence emphasised by analogy, that the door to the court was currently locked and it did not have the key.
“Even with the key, this court still cannot open the door because Article 150(8) of the Federal Constitution ousts judicial scrutiny,” it said.
The statement said the legal team was “deeply disappointed that refusing leave at this preliminary threshold denies litigants the fundamental right to access to justice with regard to crucial matters” on the Federal Constitution.
Hassan will be appealing against the decision.
Lawyers Gurdial Singh Nijar, Christopher Leong, Abdullah Abdul Rahman, Abraham Au and Nirvan Gopalan-Krishnan represented Hassan.
The Attorney-General’s Chambers was represented by S Narkunavathy, Ahmad Hanir Hambaly and Safiyyah Omar.
Lawyers Abdul Rashid Ismail, Gregory Das and Azreen Rastom held a watching brief for the Malaysian Bar.
Last week, a High Court in Kuala Lumpur dismissed Anwar Ibrahim’s bid to commence judicial review of the advice to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to declare the emergency.
Anwar’s lawyer Ramkarpal Singh said that among the reasons given was that the ouster clauses in Articles 150(6) and (8) were valid and excluded judicial review of matters relating to the proclamation of an emergency and resulting ordinances by the King.
In the application filed on Jan 25, Anwar had sought a declaration that the decision by the Cabinet, led by Muhyiddin Yassin, to advise the King to promulgate Section 14 of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021, which had resulted in the suspension of Parliament, was unconstitutional, unlawful, had no effect and was ultra vires.
Anwar also sought a declaration that Section 14 of the Emergency Ordinance was inconsistent with Article 150 (3) and (5) of the Constitution, and was therefore unconstitutional and invalid.
On March 11, another High Court judge in Kuala Lumpur, Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid, also ruled that any challenge made against the King’s emergency proclamation and the ordinances enacted was not amenable to judicial review.
Ahmad Kamal said Article 150(8), which states that the King’s decision cannot be challenged in any court on any grounds, was valid and constitutional.
“More importantly, Article 150(8) has shut the court’s doors on any challenge or application made against the proclamation and the ordinances enacted,” he said in dismissing the application by Salahuddin Ayub (Pulai MP), Johari Abdul (Sungai Petani MP) and Abdul Aziz Bari (Tebing Tinggi assemblyman in Perak).
Three more challenges by former Bersatu leader Khairuddin Abu Hassan, a group of non-governmental organisations and the Malaysian Bar are pending in the High Court.