MACC, gov’t object to MUDA’s bid to refer judge Nazlan probe to Federal Court

KUALA LUMPUR – The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and the government objected to MUDA’s application to refer constitutional issues regarding the investigation into Judge Datuk Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali to the Federal Court as the request has become academic, the High Court heard today.

Senior Federal Counsel Ahmad Hanir Hambaly, who acted for MACC and the government as defendants, said the proposed questions raised by MUDA are no longer a live issue because the issue has already been decided by the Federal Court in Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s case and other appeals.

In his submission, Ahmad Hanir said that the Federal Court’s decision in Najib’s case was recognised by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim during the question-and-answer session in the Senate on June 19, 2023.

“Datuk Seri Anwar told the Senate that MACC’s findings did not suggest that a criminal offence had been committed. The Attorney-General’s Chambers agreed with that conclusion. Therefore, the defendants humbly pray for MUDA’s application to be dismissed with costs,” he told High Court judge Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid.

Lawyer Lim Wei Jiet representing MUDA submitted that MACC does not have the jurisdiction, much less any expertise to investigate or make findings on breaches of the Judges’ Code of Ethics 2009 or conflict of interest on the part of superior court judges.

“Any complaint of breach of the Judges’ Code of Ethics 2009 ought to be directed to and be dealt with by the Prime Minister or the Chief Justice pursuant to Article 125(3) and (3A) of the Federal Constitution, or the Judges’ Ethics Committee under the Judges’ Ethics Committee Act 2010.

“Therefore, the matter must be referred to the Federal Court for determination,” he said.

Judge Ahmad Kamal set Jan 17 next year to decide on MUDA’s application.

On April 25, MUDA filed the application to refer constitutional issues to determine whether MACC has the authority to investigate a serving superior court judge for breaching the Judges’ Code of Ethics 2009 and presiding over a case despite a conflict of interest.

MUDA as the plaintiff filed the originating summons on April 12, seeking a declaration that the MACC has no authority or jurisdiction to investigate a finding or view that serving judges of the High Court, Court of Appeal and the Federal Court have breached the Judges’ Code of Ethics 2009 and were in conflict of interest in presiding over a particular court case.

MUDA is also seeking a declaration that the MACC’s finding or view that Justice Mohd Nazlan had been in breach of the Code of Ethics or had a conflict of interest in presiding over SRC International Sdn Bhd cases, is unlawful and unconstitutional. – BERNAMA / pic TMR FILE