Front page article today from The Business Times (Singapore):
Ruling may lead to huge damages claims, affect major govt complex in KL
"A large plot of land in Kuala Lumpur occupied by various government agencies for almost three decades has been found to have been illegally acquired by the government of the-then British Malaya in 1956 in a unanimous court ruling that could open Putrajaya to potential damages running into the hundreds of millions of ringgit
In late November, the Federal Court refused leave to government counsel to appeal a decision by the Court of Appeal that decided that the 1956 acquisition by the government of 263.3 acres of land belonging to private firm Semantan Estates (1952) was not "lawfully" executed and that the government had been acting as "a trespasser" since then,
The title under which the land is held was prepared in the 1950s and would have been changed by now so it isn't clear what the area includes exactly as it is now highly developed. Even so, it would almost certainly include the Jalan Duta Government Complex which includes the Internal Revenue Board, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, and two bank branches including CIMB.
But what isn't clear is whether the land in question extends out into the immediate vicinity of the government complex. That is possible as the complex appears to take up far less than 263 acres. If so, it could include buildings like the High Court Complex, the National Archives' building, the Federal Territories Mosque, even part of the new palace of the Malaysian King."
- It will put paid to a proposal to privatise the Jalan Duta Government Complex
- It will likely cost the government dearly, probably several hundreds of millions of RM
I love court cases where the underdog wins. The case has dragged on for some time (60 years!), but better late than never.