SHAH ALAM – The Sultan of Selangor, Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah today reminded court judges and judicial officers to always protect the integrity and independence of the judiciary.
The Sultan said respect for the judgments and decisions of the courts depended on public confidence in the integrity and independence of the judges in making decisions without fear or favour.
In this regard, the Sultan said the judges were required to make decisions in a professional manner based on the Constitution and law, and without being influenced by the interest of certain parties, public opinion pressure or fear of being criticised.
“Court judges can only side with the Constitution and the law, and not with other parties.
“Indeed freedom, peace, progress and the rule of law can only be upheld and guaranteed if the people have full confidence in the independence and integrity of the judiciary.
“Carry out the tasks entrusted, with sincerity, honesty, diligence and efficiency to hear and solve the cases before them,” the Sultan said when officially opening the new Klang Court building, here.
Also present were Tengku Permaisuri Selangor Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin, Chief Justice Tun Arifin Zakaria, Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali and Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali.
Sultan Sharafuddin commended the Malaysian Judiciary for taking the approach of appointing judges from among the advocates and solicitors with the qualifications, talent and integrity to hold the post.
The Sultan said this approach would encourage diversity in expertise and legal knowledge in the Malaysian Judiciary in facing the challenge of dealing with current legal issues in Malaysia.
Sultan Sharafuddin, meanwhile, also thanked the Malaysian Judiciary for having built the additional building for the Klang Court complex, to enable the Sessions and Magistrate’s courts to be located in one place, besides providing comfort to members of the public dealing with the courts.
“I hope with the sophisticated facilities available, the court proceedings will be more efficient, smoother and faster, and the long-standing, burdening problem of backlog of cases can be reduced.
“The backlog of cases and court hearing delays have to a certain extent affected the image of the judiciary, resulting in the public having a negative perception of the courts and feel discouraged to take action in seeking redress and upholding their rights in court,” the Sultan said.
Sultan Sharafuddin also urged judges, judicial officers and staff of the courts in Selangor to carry out their duties with full responsibility, and to be client-friendly and professional at all times and in all situations.
Arifin, in his speech, said the four-storey additional building costing RM48.3 million for the Klang Court complex was built along a court technology concept, equipped with an e-court system which had a court recording and transcription system.
He said the new building was also equipped with a room for vulnerable witnesses, to help those having difficulty to give evidence in open court, such as victims of abuse or sexual offences and cases involving children where they could testify via video conferencing.
“Another characteristic of a smart court is the availability of a welfare room specifically for children. I believe such a facility can help smoothen court proceedings, besides protecting vulnerable as well as child witnesses.
“These measures were taken to ensure the witnesses could give the best evidence in court and to help them overcome any arising pressure from testifying in court,” he said. – BERNAMA