Sources of Law

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Sources of Malaysian Law

Weeks 3 & 4

• The sources of Malaysian Law mean the legal
rules that make the laws in Malaysia, which
can be classified into written and unwritten

Written Law
• Is the most important source of law, includes the following: 1. Federal and State Constitutions.
Federal Constitution
– Is the supreme law of the land (Article 4 states that any law passed after Merdeka Day which is inconsistent with
the constitution shall, to the extent of inconsistency, be
void) by virtue of the case, Suderinder Singh v. Government
of Federation of Malaya (1962) M.L.J 169.
– Enshrines the basic or fundamental rights of the individual (Articles 5, 9, 10 or 13)
– Amendments requiring two-third majority (Article 159)
– Amendment requiring simple majority
– Amendment requiring consent of Majlis Raja-Raja

State Constitutions
• There are also constitutions of the 13 States in the federation • State constitution contains provisions listed in the 8th schedule • The provisions include matters concerning the Ruler, the Executive Council and the Legislature, etc

• Article 71 states that if any provision is inconsistent with them, parliament may remove any inconsistency
• In Malaysia, laws are legislated by parliament at the federal level and by state legislative assemblies at state level. Laws that are enacted by parliament after 1946 are called Ordinances, after Merdeka are called Acts (Please refer to the procedures for the enactment of an act of parliament)

• Laws made by the state legislative assembly are called Enactments (laws in Sarawak are called Ordinances)
• Parliament and the State Legislatures are not supreme

• Parliament is competent to enact laws on matters
enumerated in List I of the 9th schedule while states can enact laws on matters in List II
• List III are within the concurrent competence of both
Subsidiary Legislation (SL)
• Is a legislation made by persons or bodies under powers
conferred on...
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