The judiciary system in Malaysia is an essential component of the country’s legal framework. It is responsible for interpreting and applying the laws of the land, resolving disputes, and upholding the principles of justice, fairness, and the rule of law. The judiciary operates independently and is separate from the executive and legislative branches of the government. Here are the key components of the judiciary system in Malaysia:
- Hierarchy of Courts: The Malaysian judiciary comprises a hierarchical system of courts, with the Federal Court at the apex. The courts are organized into two main tiers:
- Superior Courts: This tier includes the Federal Court, the Court of Appeal, and the High Courts of Malaya and Sabah and Sarawak. These courts have the authority to hear both civil and criminal cases and handle significant legal matters.
- Subordinate Courts: The subordinate courts consist of the Sessions Courts, the Magistrates’ Courts, and the Penghulu’s Courts. These courts deal with less complex civil and criminal cases and are mainly responsible for handling matters with lower monetary value.
- Federal Court: The Federal Court is the highest court in Malaysia. It has the authority to hear appeals on constitutional matters, disputes between states or the federal government, and cases of public interest. The Federal Court is the final court of appeal in Malaysia, and its decisions are binding on all lower courts.
- Court of Appeal: The Court of Appeal is the second-highest court in the country. It hears appeals from the High Courts and has the authority to review decisions made by the Sessions Courts and other subordinate courts.
- High Courts: The High Courts of Malaya and Sabah and Sarawak have jurisdiction over civil and criminal matters. They serve as the courts of original jurisdiction, and their decisions can be appealed to the Court of Appeal.
- Syariah Courts: In addition to the civil courts, Malaysia also has Syariah courts that handle cases related to Islamic law. The Syariah courts operate parallel to the civil courts and have jurisdiction over Muslims in matters related to family law and personal status.
- Judicial Appointments: The appointment of judges in Malaysia is made by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (the King) on the advice of the Prime Minister. Judges are selected based on their qualifications, experience, and suitability for the role.
- Judicial Independence: The judiciary in Malaysia operates independently from the executive and legislative branches of the government. This independence is crucial for upholding the rule of law and ensuring fair and impartial administration of justice.
The Malaysian judiciary plays a vital role in maintaining the rule of law and protecting the rights of individuals and entities. It operates based on the principles of justice, fairness, and equality, making it an essential pillar of the country’s legal system.