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Land Rights Protected in Malaysia
Interlaw member firm Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill (LHAG) has won a landmark victory in a Malaysian fundamental rights case.
Rosli Dahlan successfully represented United Allied Empire Sdn Bhd (UAE), a Chinese development company, whose land was compulsorily acquired by the Malaysian religious authorities.
UAE had made an application to develop its 26-acre land, with the provision of one acre for a mosque. Instead, the religious authorities of the State of Selangor compulsorily acquired the entire 26 acres.
LHAG filed for judicial review, claiming the authorities were trying to acquire the land cheaply from private landowners. The Court of Appeal agreed and declared the compulsory acquisition to be wrongful, null and void. Costs and damages are to be paid by the State and the land will be returned to UAE.
“This judgment is ground breaking,” says Rosli. “It means land ownership continues to be a guaranteed, fundamental right and compulsory acquisition can only take place under strict conditions.”
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Pictured: Partner Rosli Dahlan, from Malaysian Interlaw member firm Lee Hishammuddin Allen & Gledhill.