KUCHING: Stampin MP Chong Chieng Jen has welcomed the High Court’s decision to admit former Chief Justice of Malaysia Tan Sri Datuk Seri Panglima Richard Malanjum to the Roll of Advocates in Sarawak.
“When he was the Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak and subsequently the Chief Justice of Malaysia, he had brought great reforms in the court’s management.
“The High Court in Sabah and Sarawak had been the model in Malaysia for the implementation of e-Court and e-filing system,” said Chong, a practising lawyer, in a statement today.
He said more importantly, Malanjum had, during his days on the Bench, delivered many judgments in the defence of Sarawak’s native customary rights (NCR) landowners in the face of oppression by the state laws.
He pointed out that in one of Malanjum’s many judgments in the Federal Court, he had even made very critical remarks on Section 5(3) and (4) of the Sarawak Land Code which is the law on extinguishment of native customary rights on land.
“I am certain that Tan Sri Richard Malanjum’s admission to the Sarawak Bar will surely help in the fight of the oppressed NCR landowners against the powers that be,” said Chong, who is also Kota Sentosa assemblyman.
He said some might disagree with Malanjum’s admission to the Sarawak Bar, but expressed his view that Malanjum had done enough for the good of the judicial system and the interests of the people of Sarawak.
“(He has also) laid down some principles of law that benefit our people to satisfy the ‘Sarawak connections’ which is the key consideration for admission to the Sarawak Bar,” he said.