|The overturn judgement that form negative impression of Court of Appeal|
The Star reported yesterday a Court of Appeal judgement against JAIS, the Selangor Islamic Religious Department.
JAIS lost a lawsuit by landowner and developer, United Allied Empire Sdn Bhd (UAE) in the force acquisition of a 26-acre of land at Bestari Jaya.
A list of state statutory bodies were instructed by the court to pay cost of RM100,000, including Selangor Islamic Religious Council (MAIS).
The temptation to rejoice as it is somewhat of a vindication [read here, here and here].
But one is talking of the Court of Appeal (COA) here. Do read back this past posting here that had a passing remark on COA.
The prejudice against COA is partly formed for overturning judgement against religious authorities in the Seremban cross dressing case.
There is an overwhelming tendency to overturn High Court judgement made in favour of government, particularly religious authorities.
The report came from the newspaper that unfairly slandered Dato Shahabudin Yahya, MP for Tasik Gelugor by misreporting his debate in Parliament on syariah ruling on marriageable age of young women as allowing rape victim to be married off to rapist.
The Star report was suspiciously descriptive in legal terminologies in their report..
Description of "unlawful and tainted with bad faith", "land grab", "unlawful acquisition", "evasive conduct constituted mala fide (bad faith)", "a curious mix of bare denials, contradiction of themselves", and "procedural impropriety" was lavishly applied to JAIS.
The report below:
Friday, 14 April 2017 | MYT 10:04 AMThe bona fide basis of the land acquisition was kept to the minimal. If there is bona fide basis to acquire for public purpose, why the judgement by COA came out this way?
Court of Appeal makes landmark decision over Selangor land acquisition
by Chelsea LY. Ng
PETALING JAYA: In a landmark decision, the Court of Appeal ruled that the forced acquisition of 26 acres of private land by the Selangor state government and five state authorities including the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) was unlawful and tainted with bad faith.
The court in its grounds of the judgment made available Friday morning restored and enhanced the protection of landowners' rights in Malaysia against such possible land grab.
It stated that there must be strict adherence to the procedural requirements and steps in law that public bodies must fulfil before forcibly acquiring private land.
The judgment stemmed from the case between the landowner and developer United Allied Empire Sdn Bhd (UAE) that had accused Jais and the other state bodies of abuse of power for the unlawful acquisition of the land in Bestari Jaya in 2013.
The panel led by Justice Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim, in allowing UAE's appeal, described the response by Jais and the other defendants as "a curious mix of bare denials, contradiction of themselves", Justice Abang Iskandar said, adding that the evasive conduct clearly constituted mala fide (bad faith).
The case clearly was one of procedural impropriety, the court held in its 36-page judgment.
The appellate court also granted all 24 reliefs that UAE had sought, including a court order compelling the Selangor bodies to declare their actual intention for acquiring the massive plot of land in Selangor's Bestari Jaya.
The Court of Appeal granted a total of RM100,000 in costs to UAE for proceedings here and in the High Court, with half of it to be paid by four respondents - the Selangor Land and Mines Department director, the Kuala Selangor land administrator, Jais and the Selangor government.
The other half is to be paid by two others which UAE had sued, namely the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) and Selangor Zakat Board.
The High Court had on Dec 3, 2015, dismissed UAE's application for a judicial review to quash the acquisition decision.
The court was told that there was an existing mosque occupying 0.2 acres of the 26 acres of land. In its development plans for the entire plot of land, UAE had, on its own accord, set aside 0.8 acres for the existing mosque's expansion.
The defendants claimed that the acquisition was bona fide as the planned "mosque" on the 26 acres of land would include a religious school and a burial site, for public purposes.
Lawyer Rosli Dahlan, assisted by Bahari Yeow and Ho Ai Ting, acted for UAE while lawyer Kama Azura Md Kamel represented Mais and the Zakat Board. Selangor assistant legal advisor Naziah Mokhtar appeared for the state and the remaining defendants.
There could be legal reasons or interpretations.
However, Justice Abang Iskandar Abang Hashim is not one of those species of "Hishamuddin Yunoses, Ariff Yusoffs, Tengku Maimoons, Rohana Yusoffs, David Wong Dak Wahs, Lim Yee Lans, Idrus Haruns, Nalini Patmanathans, and Hamid Sultans".
UAE is defended by lawyer Rosli Dahlan. Could it be a coincident that cases involving Rosli always get psyched up or twisted by the media - mainstream or pro-opposition or social?