Federal Court fixes Sept 9 to hear Melaka Gateway developer’s leave application

PUTRAJAYA (Aug 26): The Federal Court has fixed Sept 9 to hear the application for leave to appeal by a firm which was earlier denied permission to initiate a judicial review over the termination of the Melaka Gateway coastal reclamation project.

Datuk Loh Siew Cheang, the lawyer for the firm KAJ Development Sdn Bhd, confirmed the date when contacted by The Edge.

The date was fixed by Federal Court deputy registrar Norhafizah Zainal Abidin during case management today.

The firm filed the judicial review application on Dec 4 last year, after its agreement with the Melaka government was terminated.

The agreement, signed in October 2017, comprised a three-year concession for land reclamation of islands that would form the foundation of the multi-billion ringgit Melaka Gateway project, which would involve a mega port and free trade economic zone.

KAJ Development is seeking a court order to quash the state government's directive to issue the notice of termination dated Nov 11, 2020.

The company also wants a declaration that the termination notice is null and void, as it violates Section 7 and 9(1) of the Temporary Measures to Reduce the Impact of Covid-19 Act.

On Feb 17, the High Court denied the leave sought by KAJ Development to have the full merits of the judicial review heard. Justice Anselm Charles Fernandis ruled that there is no public law element involved in the state's decision.

On April 9, the Court of Appeal upheld the High Court's decision.

KAJ Development CEO Datuk Michelle Ong had previously said that the Melaka Gateway project is fully funded by the firm without any cost to the state government or the federal government.

She also noted that there are no loans or guarantees provided by the government to the company.

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