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Last 3 Days to Save RM450 E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Friday, 21 June 2019 10:50am
To all Members of the Malaysian Bar
We refer to Circular No 079/2019 dated 23 Apr 2019 where we informed Members that the 2019 Bar Council subscription is due and payable.

We draw your attention to section 46(5) of the Legal Profession Act 1976 ("LPA"), which states as follows (emphasis added):

"Liability to pay any annual subscription to the Malaysian Bar shall arise when the subscription has been fixed by the Bar Council. All annual subscriptions to the Malaysian Bar shall be paid by the 30th day of June of each year."
Please note that the deadline for payment of the annual subscription, as provided in the LPA, must be strictly adhered to, and no application for waiver of penalty will be entertained.  If you fail to pay by the deadline, you will have to pay an additional sum of RM450.
For more information, please click here to download Circular No 079/2019.
Rajen Devaraj
Chief Executive Officer 
Bar Council
Press Release | Implement Holistic Measures to Improve Treatment of Refugees and Asylum-Seekers E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Thursday, 20 June 2019 05:16pm
ImageOn this World Refugee Day 2019 — which is observed on 20 June annually — the Malaysian Bar calls on the Government to take concrete steps to respect and uphold the rights and dignity of refugees and asylum-seekers. 

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (“UNHCR”) in Malaysia, these are the approximate statistics regarding refugees and asylum-seekers registered with UNHCR in Malaysia as at the end of April this year: 170,460 refugees and asylum-seekers, 68% of whom are men, while 32% are women; and 43,710 children below the age of 18. 

Despite the large presence of refugees and asylum-seekers in the country for several years, Malaysia remains without a properly constituted comprehensive policy framework to deal with the treatment of such persons, and the issues they face.  Our laws do not accord refugees and asylum-seekers due recognition, care and protection. Thus, they are exposed to arrest, detention, whipping and deportation.  

Refugees and asylum-seekers are yet to be recognised as a workforce in Malaysia, and continue to be denied access to lawful employment.  We remind the Malaysian Government that it had pledged — in its election manifesto for the 14th General Election held in May 2018 — to “legitimise the status of refugees by providing them with UNHCR cards and ensuring their legal right to work” (see “Promise 35”), and to “ratify the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees” (see “Promise 59”).

A regional approach is crucial in dealing with concerns regarding refugees and asylum-seekers.  The Malaysian Bar urges the Malaysian Government, as an active and leading member of ASEAN, to continue its dialogues with the Myanmar Government to push for a holistic and humane solution to the issues pertaining to the Rohingya. 

The Malaysian Bar is concerned that human trafficking of refugees in the region continues to be on the rise.  All nations in this region share a common responsibility to confront and deal with this scourge.  The Malaysian Bar commends the Malaysian Government for setting up a Royal Commission of Inquiry (“RCI”) to investigate the cases of human trafficking and “death camps” uncovered in Wang Kelian, Perlis four years ago.  Members of the Bar held a watching brief — albeit with limited access to the proceedings and documents — during the public hearing, which has concluded.  The Bar calls for a report of the RCI’s investigations, findings and conclusions to be published in the interest of openness, transparency and accountability, and for those responsible for this heinous atrocity to be brought to task.

The Malaysian Bar also applauds the Government’s move in joining 180 other nations of the United Nations General Assembly to adopt, on 17 December 2018, the Global Compact on Refugees.  We call on the Government to take the lead in implementing the provisions of this Global Compact to address refugee-related issues in the country, especially in providing access to lawful employment, education for refugee children, as well as better and affordable healthcare for refugees.

B&B Games 2019 | The Fall of the Resistance (Cross-Country: Day 3) E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Monday, 24 June 2019 06:14pm
Contributed by Ashish Mathews, Co-Convener for Cross-Country, Bar Council Sports Committee; with photos by Florence Laway, Senior Administrative Assistant, Bar Council

The 50th edition of the Bench and Bar Games between the Malaysian Bar and the Law Society of Singapore (“LSS”) was held in Singapore from 27 April to 29 April 2019, with the cross-country race taking place on the morning of the 29th.  Unusually, cross-country was scheduled for the final day of the Games, a pleasant change resulting in a higher than average representation of cross-country runners at the closing gala dinner.


Flashback to the months leading up to the Games, the team was in a good rhythm with a consistently high attendance for training (which was increased to twice a week in the closing weeks) despite the loss of the services of our coach and the last minute blow of losing two of our top five male runners to injury and clashing commitments.  Needless to say, this team has developed into a family, coach or not; training did not stop and attendance did not drop.

In terms of the race course, Singapore opened talks clearly wanting an end to the elevation wars of the previous three years with every venue suggested being as flat as a pancake.  Unfortunately, this was the limits of clarity on the part of the LSS Conveners with the course being changed a number of times prior to the event.
B&B Games 2019 | Golf: Day 2 E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Monday, 24 June 2019 06:10pm
Contributed by K Puspalingam, Convener for Golf, Bar Council Sports Committee; and photos by Florence Laway, Senior Administrative Assistant, Bar Council

The final tally for the golf tournament held on 26 Apr 2019 at Keppel Golf Club was 45 golfers from the Malaysian side and 42 from the Singapore side.  I am glad to report that we had six golfers from the Bench this time around.

The tournament commenced at 7:30 am shot-gun amidst the intermittent drizzle.  The siren went off signalling us to stop play after most of the players had completed their 5th hole when the drizzle turned into a heavy shower which continued unabated until about 11:00 am, by which time most of the greens and fairways had turned into puddles.


According to the Sports Chairperson and Golf Convener of the Law Society of Singapore (“LSS”), Keppel Golf Club had imposed a condition that the competition has to be completed by 12:30 pm.  With about 13 holes remaining to be completed, both captains after consultation with the players who took refuge at the golfers terrace decided to call off the tournament and declare the game a draw.  Instead of contributing a full one point as always, we conceded half a point to Singapore.  Thanks to the divine intervention as quipped by one Singapore player.
Press Release | The Public Interest is Served by a Full and Fair Hearing, Not Speed Alone E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Tuesday, 18 June 2019 11:51pm
ImageThe Malaysian Bar disagrees strongly with the purported statement by a former Chief Justice of the Federal Court, Tun Dato’ Seri Zaki bin Tun Azmi (“Tun Zaki”), who reportedly urged Judges to be more selective in allowing postponement of cases, and suggested that the Federal Court issue a ruling to the effect that ongoing trials “should not be held back just because of interlocutory applications by lawyers”.  

An interlocutory application may well be merited, and should not be unfairly construed as merely an act intended to delay the main trial.  Such applications are well within the rights of every litigant.  Tun Zaki’s view is unacceptable, as a main action cannot run parallel with an interlocutory application, or any appeals therefrom.

Over the past decade, the Malaysian Bar has often reiterated that an excellent justice system requires a combination of a fair conduct of cases, their efficient disposal, and well-reasoned and well-written decisions, so as to ensure that justice is done — and is seen to be done — in all cases.  In the administration of justice, the emphasis must be on quality and integrity over quantity, and to ensure that justice is in no instance sacrificed for speed or expediency.

We recall a period of time during which the Judiciary, then helmed by Tun Zaki, was focused extensively on clearing the backlog of cases.  This resulted in what was perceived to have been an over-emphasis on the speed of disposal of cases.  The zealousness of this approach led to instances of injustice, particularly in criminal proceedings in the lower courts.  For instance, the public might not have had the benefit of engaging counsel of their choice, given the difficulty that many lawyers had in coping with the speed of disposal of court matters.  There were also instances where courts proceeded with criminal trials without the accused person being represented by counsel.  Furthermore, lawyers did not have sufficient time to adequately prepare for their cases.

These situations are objectionable.  The criminal justice system, in particular, requires a far more detailed and tempered approach.  The problems faced are considerably different from those of the civil courts, and expediting hearings may not be entirely in the public interest if doing so results in more instances of flawed acquittals, or an accused is denied the right to a proper and full defence.

In the matter of the postponement and adjournment of cases, it is a critical part of the individual independence of judicial officers that they have sole control of the cases before them — including the discretion whether or not to grant an adjournment or a stay — as they must be guided by the need to do “substantial justice” between the parties.  Any ruling that removes this crucial element of discretion would significantly restrict the effectiveness and value of the judicial process.  Litigation is not an exact science, and a certain degree of latitude must be permitted, to account for the vagaries of legal practice.
The true reasons behind any backlog that persists must be correctly identified and understood.  Administrative reforms to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the judicial process should therefore continue to be addressed, in tandem with reforms aimed at bolstering  judicial integrity and independence.

We reiterate our call for the prompt establishment of the Royal Commission of Inquiry in relation to the allegations of judicial interference and judicial misconduct — which the Government had announced in February 2019 — and for its terms of reference to be expanded to include recommending holistic proposals for thorough and comprehensive reforms to improve and strengthen the institution of the Judiciary. 

The Malaysian Bar will do our utmost to protect the interests of the public and the Members of the Bar at all times, in matters relating to the administration of justice.  Towards this end, we will continue to lend our full support to the Judiciary as we work towards realising our collective aspiration of an outstanding justice system.

Abdul Fareed Abdul Gafoor
Malaysian Bar

18 June 2019

Job Vacancy | Senior Officer, Bar Council Admission Department (Deadline: 15 July 2019) E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Monday, 17 June 2019 04:45pm
ImageThe Bar Council invites applications for the post of Senior Officer (Admission Department) at its Secretariat.


(1) Draft letters and documents for general enquiries on pupillage and admission matters, and deal with all correspondence
(2) Attend to walk–in, telephone and e-mail enquiries
(3) Prepare notices of objection where there are complaints against pupils in chambers
(4) Conduct research and prepare memorandums and opinions
(5) Perform general clerical duties (including photocopying, faxing, mailing and filing)
(6) Maintain databases and update records on department processes
(7) Liaise with external solicitors and third parties
(8) Attend meetings, and prepare the minutes and all necessary documents
(9) Handle all other matters as instructed by the management
B&B Games 2019 | Malaysian Bar Sticks It to the Law Society of Singapore (Hockey: Day 1) E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Wednesday, 19 June 2019 06:22pm
Contributed by H R Dipendra, Convener for Hockey, Bar Council Sports Committee; and photos by Satha Selvan Subramaniam, Senior Administrative Assistant, Bar Council  



Harbhajan Singh (“Bobby”) —  H R Dipendra — Mohd Rafique Rashid Ali — Muhammad Fariz Mustafa —  Adrine Verghese Jacob — Khairul “Waq” Idham Ismail — Amrit Singh — Anand Raj — Anand Ponnudurai — Sanjay Kumar Saigal — Jasmit Singh — Vijayraj Kanniah — Mohd Izzudin b Mohamad — Oazair Huneid Tyeb — Rajesh Kumar — Avinder Singh Gill — Anil Singh — Sarmeet Singh — Harvin Khaira — Wong Hong Yi 

With an average squad age of 41.8 years (it was 40.5 in 2018), the Malaysian Bar Hockey Team once again opened proceedings at the Bench and Bar Games 2019.  Playing at the CCAB Hockey Pitch @Evans Road, both the Malaysian and Singapore teams were keen to start positively and deliver the first point to their respective contingents.
Press Release | The Government Must Ensure Effective Enforcement of Laws to Protect and Preserve the Environment for the Benefit of All Citizens E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Sunday, 16 June 2019 10:34am
ImageThe Malaysian Bar is deeply concerned about the frequency and severity of water pollution incidents— a form of environmental damage — in the country.

On 7 March 2019, news broke out about the industrial pollution in Sungai Kim Kim in Johore, which reportedly affected the health of almost 6,000 people.  A week later, the Selangor Water Management Authority reported that pollution believed to have been caused by chemical waste had been detected in the Klang River.

It is the Malaysian Bar’s view that contamination of water sources must be regarded as a threat to national security and well-being, and be dealt with as such, urgently and with the utmost seriousness.

The importance of protecting our water sources — including rivers, seas, lakes, ground water, dams and reservoirs — was recognised by Parliament through the enactment of the Water Services Industry Act 2006, which gives the Federal Government the executive authority in respect of all matters relating to water supply systems and services.  The legislation provides for severe penalties for offences, signifying the gravity of the issue of water safety.

Article 5 of the Federal Constitution, which provides that “[n]o person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty save in accordance with law”, has been interpreted by the Malaysian superior courts to include the right to live in a reasonably healthy and pollution-free environment (see Tan Tek Seng v Suruhanjaya Perkhidmatan Pendidikan & Another [1996] 1 MLJ 261).  The courts have also stated that the interpretation of Article 5 should be given a “prismatic” approach, ie provisions relating to fundamental rights must be generously interpreted to encompass the recognition of implied human rights (see Lee Kwan Woh v PP [2009] 5 MLJ 301 (Federal Court)).

Environmental rights — ie rights relating to environmental protection — should therefore be seen to encompass not only the right to a healthy environment but also human rights vulnerable to environmental harm, such as the right to life that is guaranteed in Article 5.

The Malaysian Bar is also concerned that water pollution reportedly may have contributed to the illness and death that have befallen the Batek (also known as “Bateq”) Orang Asli community in Kuala Koh, Kelantan.  The Government must spare no effort in uncovering the cause of, and resolving, the problem, as the welfare and even lives of these indigenous people are at stake.

The relevant authorities must also look into the needs of the Orang Asli — in the Batek and other communities — and take measures to increase Orang Asli empowerment and self-determination.  In doing so, the dignity of the Orang Asli must be fully respected, including their right to free, prior and informed consent as well as their right to prior and effective consultation at every stage of the process, in compliance with international best practices on indigenous and human rights.

It is disheartening to note that environmental pollution by industries continues to be prevalent, despite the existence of legislation to counter this menace.  The Malaysian Bar calls on the Government to take immediate action to ensure the effective enforcement of environmental laws in order to curb activities that have adverse and irreversible effects on the environment as well as the health of present and future generations of all Malaysians.  The Government is under a fiduciary duty to protect and preserve the environment, and to ensure that the full force of the law is brought to bear on all wrongdoers.

Abdul Fareed Abdul Gafoor
Malaysian Bar

16 June 2019
Job Vacancy | Legal Officer, Complaints and Intervention Department (Deadline: 8 July 2019) E-mail
Posted by Web Administrator   
Friday, 26 April 2019 03:06pm
ImageThe Bar Council invites applications for the post of Legal Officer (Complaints and Intervention Department) at its Secretariat.


(1) Attend to telephone and e-mail enquiries regarding complaints against advocates and solicitors or the disciplinary process;
(2) Attend to walk-in complainants;
(3) Draft letters of complaint and attend to correspondence;
(4) Prepare memorandums and opinions, and conduct research;
(5) Conduct disciplinary hearings before the Disciplinary Committee of the Advocates and Solicitors Disciplinary Board;
(6) Perform general clerical duties (not limited to photocopying, faxing, mailing and filing);
(7) Maintain databases and update records on various complaints processes;
(8) Liaise with external solicitors and third parties; and
(9) Handle all other matters as instructed by the management.


(1) Minimum: Undergraduate degree in law (LLB); 
(2) Must be an advocate and solicitor of the High Court of Malaya;
(3) At least one year of legal experience in litigation;
(4) Proficiency in legal research and analysis, and legal writing;  
(5) Well-organised, able to multitask and to manage time efficiently, and able to produce detailed and accurate work under tight deadlines;
(6) Must exercise a high degree of independent judgment and initiative;
(7) Self-motivated and dedicated, and able to work independently in a challenging environment with minimum supervision, yet be a team player;  
(8) Excellent communication and interpersonal skills;
(9) Proficient in both written and spoken English and Bahasa Malaysia.  Knowledge of additional languages such as Mandarin (or other Chinese dialects) and Tamil is an added advantage;
(10) High level of computer literacy, including proficiency in using Microsoft Office applications; and
(11) Able to travel and work extended hours, including weekends if necessary.

Successful candidates can expect a competitive remuneration package based on their qualifications and level of experience. 

Interested candidates of all levels of experience, including Members of the Bar, are encouraged to apply.  Please submit a cover letter, in English, which specifies the candidate’s relevant experience and provides details regarding the requirements listed above, as well as contact particulars.

Candidates should also specify their current and expected salary, and send their cover letter, detailed curriculum vitae and a recent photograph (non-returnable) on or before 8 July 2019 (Monday), to:

Human Resource Department
Bar Council Malaysia
15 Leboh Pasar Besar
50050 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2050 2057
Fax: 03-2050 2065
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  • 2019 Sijil Annual Application
    Click the link above for details on how to apply for your Sijil Annual and Practising Certificate 2019. All applications must be made online through the Bar Council's online portal. No hard copies accepted.
  • 2019 Malaysian Bar Payments Required Under the LPA
    Click the link above to download Circular 079/2019, which includes a payment guide and a set of Frequently-Asked-Questions.
  • Praxis (Sept–Dec 2018) Available for Download
    The Sept–Dec 2018 issue of Praxis is available for download. Click the link above to download.
  • 2019 Hotel Corporate Rates
    Attending seminars? Going for a holiday? Click on the link above to check out the list of hotel corporate rates for Members of the Bar, which is updated occasionally.
  • Starting a New Practice
    If you are thinking of setting up your own law practice, click on the link above to view Bar Council's information and checklists to help you prepare for your new endeavour.
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Recipient of the Malaysian Bar Lifetime Achievement Award 2019 — Cecil Rajendra (16 Mar 2019)

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