Update: Semantan Estates appeals against Kenari Maluri's intervention in land dispute

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 15): Semantan Estates (1952) Sdn Bhd is appealing against the High Court's decision to allow Kenari Maluri Sdn Bhd, a company claiming to represent the majority of Semantan Estate's shareholders, to intervene in the former's judicial review application.

Following proceedings in chambers before Justice Datuk Nordin Hassan, Kenari Maluri's lawyer Datuk Edward Ng Boon Siong told the press that the hearing for the case has been postponed to Oct 3 pending the decision of the Court of Appeal on the matter.

Also present in chambers were Janet Chai Pei Ying and Adelin Phung, who are representing Semantan Estates, and Krishna Priya, who is acting on behalf of the government.

Nordin had on May 29 fixed the date to hear the merits of Semantan Estates' claims to retain beneficial interests and cause to transfer ownership of the 106.7ha land along Jalan Duta (now Jalan Tuanku Abdul Halim).

Kenari Maluri sought to intervene in the judicial dispute because it wants to provide a win-win solution to a pre-Merdeka dispute over the large tract of prime land.

It has also claimed it is friendly to both the plaintiff and defendants, namely the government and six other defendants.

Semantan Estates had in 2017 named the Malaysian government, federal lands commissioner, minister charged with the responsibility for land in the federal territory, natural resources and environment minister, director-general of the lands and mines department, director of lands and mines (federal territory) and federal territory registrar of titles as respondents.

The company filed a judicial review on the grounds that the government and other respondents had failed, neglected, omitted and refused to comply with Semantan Estates to give effect to a 2009 court order.

They had sought leave from Justice Nordin's court for an order of mandamus to compel the respondents to do the following:

  • Transfer and cause to be transferred the 106.7ha in Mukim Batu to Semantan Estates free from encumbrances and liabilities
  • Execute and cause to execute to effect the transfer of the said land, and issue and cause to issue the document title of the said land to Semantan Estates.

Besides this, the company also sought leave for:

  • The preparation, change, cancellation, deletion, correction or amendment of the registrar document of the land title and to register proprietorship of the said land to Semantan Estates, and
  • Returning and making arrangements in respect of returning and handing over the possession of the land to Semantan Estates, which is recognised as the lawful proprietor and owner of the land.

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