An Independant Judiciary in Malaysia

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An independent judiciary is indispensible to impartial justice under the law

It is quoted by the judge in the case of Allinson v General Council of Medical Education & Registration that “any person who is to take part in a proceeding should not be in a position that might be suspected of being bias”. From here we see that the reason underlying is to protect the judiciary and indirectly to promote impartial justice under the law by the judiciary. It is stated in the case of Menteri Hal Ehwal Dalam Negeri v Raja Petra bin Raja Kamarudin where the court in this case establishes one of the test of bias and partiality in Malaysia. This case is regarding the application to recuse judge from sitting on panel of appeals where the respondent in this case had been critical of judge in his website. The respondent argued that the judge should be precluded from hearing a case as he had in the past heard another case against the respondent. The issue in this case is whether there was ‘real danger of bias’. The court in this case dismissed the case and held that it was the respondent who was critical of Augustine Paul FCJ in his website and there was no response by the learned judge against the criticism. The respondent was also never cited for contempt for the criticism. Further, a judge is not precluded from hearing a case against a person when he had in the past heard another case against the person if the facts in the cases are different. On the question of judicial bias, the law in this area is settled. The test is premised on the ‘real danger of bias’. In this case, the court was urged to recuse the learned Augustine Paul FCJ from being one of the panel members to hear the appeals on the grounds that the respondent had been critical of the learned judge in his website and that there might be a real danger of bias on the part of the learned judge if he sat on the panel to hear the appeals. The judge stated that on question of judicial bias, the test is that there...
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