Court rejects durian planters application for judicial review

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 23 Dec 2020

At the Relau Agrotourism Park in Penang, most of the cloned durians have fallen and the fruits still on the trees are mostly of the D15 variety./Picby:CHAN BOON KAI/The Star/2 July 2019.

KUANTAN: The High Court here has rejected the applications by 204 illegal durian planters in Raub for a judicial review on the authorities' decision to evict them.

According to lawyer Siew Choon Jern, Justice Zainal Azman Ab. Aziz said the planters' request for a judicial review on the notices issued to evict them did not meet the rules of court.

"The second reason is that the court is of the opinion that the planters are trespassers and the notices issued is an administrative action.

"In other words, trespassers do not have the locus standi to file an application for a judicial review," Siew said outside the court on Wednesday (DEC 23).

The first batch of 110 planters and another group of 94 planters had named the Raub district land administrator, the state Forestry Department director, state authorities, the state government, Perbadanan Kemajuan Pertanian Negeri Pahang (PKPP) and Royal Pahang Durian Resources PKPP Sdn Bhd as respondents in their applications.

Among others, the applicants were seeking a judicial review on the notices issued to evict them from the lands in or around Sungai Ruan, Sungai Chalit, Sungai Klau, Tranum, Tras and the Gunung Benom forest reserve.

The applicants also wanted a judicial review on the state government's decision to award a lease and rights to use 2,167.9ha of land in Raub to Royal Pahang Durian Resources PKPP Sdn Bhd for a period of 30 plus 30 years, as well as the mandatory requirement that they sell their durians to an entity nominated by the joint venture company.

Siew said the court's decision to reject the applications with costs meant that the interim stay on enforcement action against the planters would have expired.

However, the lawyer said he needed to discuss with the planters on what this would entail for them and what their next course of action would be.

Siew said among the options would be to file an appeal against the decision.

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