2.1 Constitution
Federal court is established under Article 121(2) of Federal Constitution. This is the final court of appeal and the highest court in Malaysia. The decisions of the Federal Court are binding all lower courts.

2.2 Jurisdiction
i. Original
Original jurisdiction is the power to hear the case at the first instance. Federal Court has same power to hear a case as the High Court. In addition Federal court also has original jurisdiction as provided under Article 128(1) of the Federal Constitution.
Article 128(1) :
The Federal Court shall, have jurisdiction to determine in accordance with any rules of court regulating the exercise of such jurisdiction
(a) any question whether a law made by Parliament or by the Legislature of a State is invalid on the ground that it makes provision with respect to a matter with respect to which Parliament or, as the case may be, the Legislature of the State has no power to make laws; and
(b) disputes on any other question between States or between the Federation and any State.

Section 82 CJA 1964 provides that The Federal Court in the exercise of its original jurisdiction under Article 128(1)(b) of the Constitution in respect of a dispute between States or between the Federation and any State shall not pronounce any judgment other than a declaratory judgment.

ii. Appellate
Civil - Section 96 CJA 1964
An appeal shall lie from the Court of Appeal to the Federal Court with the leave of the Federal Court
(a) from any judgment or order of the Court of Appeal in respect of any civil cause or matter decided by the High Court in the exercise of its original jurisdiction involving a question of general principle decided for the first time or a question of importance upon which further argument and a decision of the Federal Court would be to public advantage; or
(b) from any decision as to the effect of any provision of the Constitution including the validity of any written law relating to any such provision.

The Federal Court may confirm, reverse or vary the decision of the Court of Appeal, or may order a retrial or may remit the matter with the opinion of the Federal Court thereon to the High Court, or may make such other order in the matter as to it may seem just. (Section 92 CJA)

The Federal Court shall have power to order that a new trial be had of any cause or matter tried by the High Court in the exercise of its original or appellate jurisdiction. (Section 100 (1) CJA)
A new trial shall not be granted on the ground of improper admission or rejection of evidence unless in the opinion of the Federal Court some substantial wrong or miscarriage of justice has been thereby occasioned. (Section 100 (2) CJA)

In criminal matters the Federal Court shall have jurisdiction to hear and determine any appeal from any decision of the Court of Appeal in its appellate jurisdiction in respect of any criminal matter decided by the High Court in its original jurisdiction subject to any rules regulating the proceedings of the Federal Court in respect of appeals from the Court of Appeal. (Section 87 (1) CJA.

Where the grounds of appeal do not raise any question of law and it appears to the Chief Justice and two other Judges of the Federal Court that the evidence is sufficient to support the conviction and that there is no material in the circumstances of the case which could raise a reasonable doubt whether the conviction was right or lead the Federal Court to consider that the sentence ought to be reduced, the appeal may, without being set down for hearing, be summarily rejected by an order under the hand of the Chief Justice. (Section 90 CJA)

iii. Referral
The Federal Court has the jurisdiction to decide a question which has arisen in another court concerning the interpretation or effect of any provisions of the Federal Constitutions which is referred to it in special case. In practice, when the issue arises, the hearing court will stay proceeding upon receiving the decision or interpretation of the provisions.

iv. Advisory
Article 130 states that the Agong may refer to the Federal Court for its opinion any question as to the effect of any provision of the constitution. The provision of Article 130 has been invoked only once, in this case:
GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA v GOVERNMENT OF KELANTAN [1968] 1 MLJ 129 –The Government of Kelantan entered into a commercial arrangement with a company, granting a mining and forest concession to it in return for advance payment of royalty under a financial package. The Federal Government was of the view that the transaction was amounted to borrowing contrary to the articles 97(2) and 111(2) of the Constitution. The Federal Court rejected the contention ruling that it did not constitute borrowing within the meaning of Constitution. However the law as established by this ruling has since been negative by the Constitution (Amendment) Act 1971 (Act A31) which brought in an extended meaning of the word ‘borrow’, to include among other things ‘royalties’.

FEDERAL COURT FEDERAL COURT Reviewed by Kamaruddin Mahmood on 9:21:00 PTG Rating: 5

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