What are the Temporary Provisions In Malaysian Constitution ?

(1) Introduction

The current Constitution of Malaysia consists of 230 articles, 15 parts and 13 schedules. Its each part provides articles and provisions on specific matter and subject. Its schedules give further explanation of the provisions that are described in the articles. Its Part XIII narrates temporary and transitional provisions.

(2) Temporary Provisions In Malaysian Constitution

Followings are temporary provisions in the Malaysian Constitution:

  • (i) Existing laws
  • (ii) Succession to property
  • (iii) Attorney General’s certificate
  • (iv) International obligations
  • (v) Auditor General
  • (vi) Powers & functions of officers
  • (vii) Waiver or postponement of oath of office
  • (viii) Remuneration of Prime Minister & ministers
  • (ix) Contributions in respect of joint services
  • (x) Preservation of pensions, etc.

(i) Existing Laws

Article 162 provides following temporary provisions the existing laws:

  • (a) Continue in force
  • (b) Repeal

(a) Continue In Force

The existing laws shall continue in force on and after the Independence Day of Malaysia.

(b) Repeal

The existing laws shall continue in force until they are repealed.

(ii) Succession To Property

Article 166 describes that any land, which was vested in the state of Malacca or the state of Penang and was occupied or used by the Malaysian Federation Government or Her Majesty’s Government or by any public authority immediately before the Independence Day of Malaysia for federal purposes, shall be occupied, used, controlled and managed by the Malaysian Federal Government or the public authority for federal purposes.

(iii) Attorney General’s Certificate

Article 167 provides for a certificate of the Attorney General:

  • (a) Application
  • (b) Proceedings
  • (c) Final & binding
  • (d) Prejudice

(a) Application

On the application of any party, which is interested in any legal proceedings, the Attorney General shall certify whether any right, liability or obligation is a or obligation of the Malaysian Federation or of a state.

(b) Proceedings

The legal proceedings in which the party is interested must be other than proceedings between the Malaysian Federation and a state.

(c) Final & Binding

Any such certificate shall for the purposes of those proceedings be final and binding on all courts.

(d) Prejudice

Such certificate shall not operate to prejudice the rights and obligations between the Malaysian Federation and any state.

(iv) International Obligations

Article 169 provides temporary provisions regarding international obligations:

  • (a) Treaty, agreement or convention
  • (b) Decision of international organization

(a) Treaty, Agreement Or Convention

Any treaty, agreement or convention, which was entered into before the Independence Day between Her Majesty or her predecessors or the Government of the United Kingdom on behalf of the Malaysian Federation or any of its parts and another country, shall be deemed to be a treaty, agreement or convention between the Malaysian Federation and that other country.

(b) Decision Of International Organization

Any decision, which was taken by an international organization and accepted before the Independence Day by the Government of the United Kingdom on behalf of the Malaysian Federation or any of its parts, shall be deemed to be a decision of an international organization of which the Malaysian Federation is a member.

(v) Auditor General

Article 175 has changed the office of Director of Audit to the office of Auditor General.

(vi) Powers & Functions Of Officers

Article 176 describes that all persons, who were serving in connection with the affairs of the Malaysian Federation immediately before the Independence Day, shall continue to have the same powers and to exercise the same. Exception Article 176 does not apply to the High Commissioner the Chief Secretary.

(vii) Waiver Or Postponement Of Oath of Office

Article 177 states that a person, who was holding an office under the Malaysian Federation immediately before the Independence Day and continues to hold this office after independence, shall perform his functions without taking required oath.

(viii) Remuneration Of Prime Minister & Ministers

Article 178 describes that the remuneration payable to Prime Minister and other ministers shall be the same as was payable to the Chief Minister and other ministers immediately before the Independence Day.

(ix) Contributions In Respect Of Joint Services

Article 179 narrates that the Malaysian Federation and any state shall continue to make contributions to joint service according the agreement that was in force immediately before the Independence Day. And such contributions shall continue until the agreement is superseded by new agreement or federal law.

(x) Preservation Of Pensions, Etc.

Article 180 provides temporary provisions regarding preservation of pensions. etc.; the Tenth Schedule to the Federation of Malaya Agreement, 1948 shall continue in force on and after the Independence Day. However, it can be amended and repealed.

(3) Conclusion

It can be finally stated that all the temporary and transitional provisions were already in force in constitutional set up under the British Rule in Malaysia. They were included in the Constitution of Malaysia only to keep the system working in the early years after the independence. Now most of them have been either amended or repealed.

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