KUDAT: Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak, Tan Sri Richard Malanjum has proposed that the Native Courts in Sabah and Sarawak be recognised as on par with the Civil Court and Native Court in significance.
He said the native courts were still relevant today to ensure as custodians, ‘survival’ of the customary laws handed down from generations.
“The native courts are still relevant considering that Sabah and Sarawak have an estimated bumiputera population of four to five million that are still practising native customs,” he told reporters.
Malanjum who is also Native Court of Appeal president said this after a workshop on Introduction to Mediation for Community Leaders here yesterday.
He also disclosed that 40 cases were currently pending at the Native Court of Appeal involving family, land and defamation issues.
The chief judge and another Native Court of Appeal judge Datuk Douglas Primus presented talks during the two-day workshop.
Sabah Special Functions Minister Datuk Teo Chee Kang who launched the workshop said it was held for the first time in Sabah and participated by 60 community leaders.
Meanwhile, Sabah Native Court Mediation and Native Customs Resource Centre president Puan Sri Charlene Jintoni said similar workshops would be conducted in every district to strengthen community unity and reduce native court cases.