Herald: ‘We’ll Wait For Written Judgment’

The editor of Herald Father Lawrence Andrew said they will wait for the written judgment of the Federal Court before deciding the next course of action.

The Federal Court dismissed the Catholic Church’s application for leave to appeal the ban on the use of the word “Allah” in its weekly publication.

Lawrence said they would have to study the judgment first before deciding what to do.

He said making a decision now would be futile if the Herald was unsure of what the written judgment would be, though one of the church’s lawyers, S Selvarajah, had said that the ban spelled the end of the court case.

A seven-member panel, chaired by Chief Justice Arifin Zakaria, said it was a majority decision to dismiss the application of leave to appeal the ban.

It was also the first time such a large panel sat to hear and determine an application for leave, said the judge.

This legal scuffle started in 2009 when Archbishop Murphy Pakiam, owner of the Herald filed a judicial review application that the Home Ministry’s decision prohibiting the use of the word Allah in the Catholic newspaper was illegal.

The High Court on Dec 13, 2009 agreed and declared the Home Ministry’s decision of the ban as illegal, null and void, but it was overturned by the Court of Appeal last October.

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