KUALA LUMPUR — Yang Di-Pertuan Besar Negri Sembilan Tuanku Muhriz Tuanku Munawir called on the government to seriously consider fiscal decentralisation and state autonomy in its policies.
Speaking at the launch of the book Hishamudin Yunus: Celebrating Judicial Independence, the ruler said that this was reflected in the people’s choice during the 14th general election on May 9.
“Due to political considerations, over the years, Malaysia has come to be known as one of the most centralised of federations. Recently, the rakyat has shown the world that Malaysia can be a better democracy.
“I hope the new federal government will work with the state governments to seriously consider issues of fiscal decentralisation and policy autonomy in the states, drawing the best practices from other democratic federations around the world,” Tuanku Muhriz said.
He also pointed out that judges must be allowed room to discharge their duties without fear or favour, citing as example what former Court of Appeal Judge Datuk Hishamudin Yunus went through during
Barisan Nasional’s rule.
Tuanku Muhriz praised Hishamudin for sticking to his guns during those “turbulent years” of the judiciary, describing the latter as a man who respects and upholds
“Judges must be conscious of the qualities of a good judge — upholding independence, maintaining impartiality, avoiding impropriety of any kind and have a good grasp of the law.
“Additionally, a good judge must also demonstrate patience and compassion in the decision-making process.
“In this context, we must respect and leave judges to discharge their noble duty without fear or favour. It is my hope judges will always uphold the fundamental principles enshrined in our Constitution,” he said.
Hishamudin Yunus: Celebrating Judicial Independence is the culmination of 29 contributors, including some of Malaysia’s top legal minds such as Emeritus Professor Datuk Shad Saleem Faruqi, Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan and 18 senior partners from Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill.