Sabah Law Society welcomes state AG’s move to retract controversial statement in court

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KOTA KINABALU, May 24 — The state government’s retraction of its challenge against the Sabah Law Society (SLS) for its court case against the federal government is a welcome move that bolsters the group’s morale.

SLS president Mohamed Nazim Maduarin said that they were buoyed by the latest move from the Sabah Attorney General’s Chambers to withdraw its challenge questioning SLS’ locus standi in the case as well as its previous submission which was seen as detrimental by the public.

“The SLS welcomes this latest development and is supportive of this latest position which is in line with the recent statement by the chief minister.

“SLS appreciates the moral support from everyone including members of the public that have engaged in this cause,” he said.

Nazim also said that the decision of the Court of Appeal on June 18 will determine whether SLS can continue to pursue Sabah’s right to the 40 per cent entitlement backdated until 1974.

“SLS trusts and respectfully submits to the discernment of the court to arrive at the necessary and just decision.

“SLS remains non-partisan and independent of any political party,” he added.

Earlier today during its online case management via Zoom, the state Attorney General Datuk Nor Asiah Mohd Yusof said that her chambers will be taking over the case on behalf of the state government in the place of Datuk Tengku Fuad Ahmad.

This is following major backlash from political parties of both divides as well as members of the public who questioned Fuad’s submission in challenging their judicial review and stating that the 40 per cent Special Grant was “aspirational but not an absolute right or mandatory”.

The Court of Appeal will decide on June 18 whether to allow the case to go ahead as per the High Court or allow the federal government’s objection.

The SLS applied for a judicial review in 2022 to compel the federal government to pay Sabah its constitutional right to 40 per cent of revenue from the state.

The High Court had granted leave to the body but the federal government brought the decision to the Court of Appeal.