By Hafiz Yatim | The Edge Markets

The High Court (Appellate and Special Powers division) on Wednesday dismissed a bid by election watchdog Bersih 2.0 and the Malaysian Bar to refer questions concerning the validity of an emergency proclamation made in 2020 that ran until August last year to the Federal Court.

Delivering his decision via email, Justice Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid ruled that such questions for determination could be made by the High Court.

“Having considered the application, I am of the considered opinion that the subject matter of this application is not within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Federal Court. The jurisdiction to determine the constitutional questions lies within the High Court.

“Thus whether the application to refer questions to the Federal Court should be allowed, I would answer in the negative. Based on the aforesaid reason, this application to refer the questions to the Federal Court under section 84 of the Courts of Judicature Act is hereby dismissed with no order as to costs,” the judge said in his judgment sighted by

Bersih 2.0 counsel Edmund Bon Tai Soon when contacted confirmed the court has dismissed both applications made by the election watchdog and the Bar.

Last month, Justice Ahmad Kamal heard submissions by the Bar and Bersih 2.0 and deferred the ruling on his decision to Wednesday (May 18).

The Bar posed 27 questions of law regarding the emergency proclamation while Bersih is said to have posed similar questions.

Both entities argued that the emergency proclamation violated Articles 4, 8, and 121 of the Federal Constitution as Parliament had no power to enact such legislation.