KUALA LUMPUR: The Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) today objected to the leave for judicial review application by a Pandan voter to challenge the dissolving of Parliament and holding the 15th General Election (GE15) during the flood-prone monsoon season later this year.
Dr Syed Iskandar Syed Jaafar Al Mahdzar, who is also a lawyer, filed the application to initiate a judicial review by naming the Election Commission (EC) chairman, caretaker Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and the government of Malaysia as respondents.
Senior federal counsel Shamsul Bolhassan, representing the AGC, submitted that none of the respondents made the decision to dissolve Parliament, instead, the decision was made by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA).
“The application by the applicant (Syed Iskandar) is to challenge the dissolution of Parliament, being a decision made by the YDPA on his discretion. It is based on the alleged illegality of the dissolution that the applicant seeks to prevent the conduct of GE15.
“It was the King who was the ultimate decision-maker and not the prime minister,” he said before judge Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid.
Shamsul further submitted that Syed Iskandar had also failed to establish his locus standi to bring this action and the relief sought cannot be granted in law.
“The applicant has not shown how his legal rights were adversely affected. He has every right to vote when the election is conducted,” he said.
Meanwhile, Syed Iskandar’s counsel Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram submitted that his client was only challenging Ismail Sabri’s request for the YDPA to dissolve the Dewan Rakyat which had paved the way for the general election.
He said Ismail Sabri’s action was unreasonable as he had taken into account irrelevant considerations when making the request to the King.
Sri Ram said the power to dissolve Parliament is vested in YDPA by Article 55(2) of the Federal Constitution but like all other powers under the constitution and written law, he must exercise it on advice.
“The YDPA has power to dissolve Parliament, however, he can only do so if a request is made to him. The request must normally come from the Prime Minister unless for special reasons, a dissolution is requested by a minister of the Cabinet acting on the authority of the Cabinet.
Judge Ahmad Kamal fixed Oct 28 to deliver his decision on Syed Iskandar’s leave application.
On Oct 14, Syed Iskandar, 55, filed the application seeking a declaration that the request by Ismail Sabri to the YDPA on Oct 9 for the dissolution of Parliament pursuant to Articles 40(2)(b) and 55(2) of the Federal Constitution is null and void and of no effect..
He is also seeking a direction in the nature of a writ of prohibition to prohibit the EC and its servants, agents or employees from taking any steps to conduct the GE15 in furtherance of the dissolution of Parliament.
The applicant filed the application on the ground that Ismail Sabri acted unreasonably and in breach of fiduciary duty in exercising his power to make the request, in that he failed to have regard to the interests of the public and the request was made for an improper or collateral purpose and was an abuse of power.
He also claimed that Ismail Sabri failed to take into account relevant considerations, the interests of the public who will be affected by the monsoon season and floods. – Bernama