Exco: Strengthen existing courts before establishing special environmental court

RAWANG, 18 Jan: Exco member Elizabeth Wong welcomed the proposal to establish a Special Environmental Court; however she thinks that the existing courts need to be strengthened first.

The Exco member for Tourism, Environment, Green Technology and Consumer Affairs, said that the strengthening of existing courts is essential to facilitate the process of seeking justice as a whole.

“If this can happen, then it is indeed a good decision, but the only thing about this court is that many environmental related cases are not moving as smoothly as we hoped.

“On behalf of the Selangor government, we feel that it is better to strengthen the existing courts with increasing the number of judges and officers, as well as other sources, before creating this special environmental court,” she told Selangor Kini.

She said this when asked to comment on the proposal to establish a Special Environmental Court which provides an opportunity to those affected to file lawsuits regarding environmental issues.

The Head of the Corporate Communications and International Relations Division of the Federal Court, Mohd Aizuddin Zolkeply, said that lawsuits heard at civil courts are not specific to the environment.

“For example, the issue of illegal logging or the Lynas (rare earth) issue. They are not satisfied because their land is being disturbed or with the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report they can file a lawsuit to the Special Environmental Court,” she said.

She said with the existence of this special court, those who filed a suit can claim compensation for the losses or an injunction to stop a project from continuing.

However, the establishment of this court is still under consideration, she said.


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