KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 — The Malaysia United Democratic Alliance (Muda) has officially been registered as a political party, pro tem president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman said today.
In an online press conference, the Muar MP said Muda was notified of its registration via an email and official letter on December 23 but was only making the announcement now as the party had been occupied with flood relief efforts.
Syed Saddiq also thanked the judiciary and Muda's lawyers for the party’s legal victory in its lawsuit against the government for previously rejecting the registration.
Syed Saddiq, holding up the official letter, also thanked the government for not appealing the High Court decision on December 14, which ordered Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin to register Muda as a political party within two weeks.
“We did not want the flood crisis to be drowned with news of politics, that is on Muda’s registration. That is why we took the stand and decided to focus first, as we were all over Malaysia for the flood mission and to lighten the burden of the rakyat, and only a week after did we announce this good news,” he added.
“This Muda is not a party that wants revenge or that is jealous or holds a grudge. That is why, thank you too to the government which did not appeal the court decision and the country’s judiciary. We are not here to exert revenge or to burn bridges. Muda’s main focus is not to fight for power but to serve the people, to ensure that Malaysia becomes a developed country, a dignified country. A country where its people of all races and religion are honoured, those with a moderate ideology. Old and young jointly serving.
“Muda is a party for all and is the party of the future,” he added.
On the party’s membership, Syed Saddiq said that over 60,000 applications have been recorded via the party’s Geng Muda registration drive online.
He said the oldest member is 83 years’ old and stressed that membership was not restricted by age, with Muda welcoming any keen to “turbo charge Malaysia forward to become a developed country”.
Syed Saddiq also expects membership to increase following Muda’s official registration.
The court victory was a hard-fought win for Muda, as it was the third lawsuit it had to file in order to be registered as a political party.
Muda had on September 17, 2020 wrote to the RoS to apply to be registered as a political party, and had on December 21, 2020 issued a letter of demand to the Registrar of Societies (RoS) after waiting for more than three months for the latter to decide on the registration application.
Muda was preparing to file a lawsuit against the RoS when the latter finally decided on January 6, 2021 to reject the party’s application for registration as a political party.
On January 12, 2021, Muda’s 13 co-founders filed its first lawsuit ― through a judicial review application ― against the home minister and RoS to challenge the registration rejection, and sought for court orders to be registered as a political party and to seek compensation.
The first lawsuit did not proceed further after the High Court’s February 4, 2021 dismissed Muda’s application for leave for the judicial review to be heard, as the court held that Muda had yet to exhaust the available remedy under the Societies Act’s Section 18 to appeal to the home minister against the RoS’ rejection.
Following the High Court’s February 4 decision, Muda had immediately on the same day filed an appeal to the home minister against the RoS’ January 6 decision to reject its application for registration as a political party.
Muda later took steps within February to comply with additional requests by RoS.
After an 81-day wait or waiting for more than two months for the home minister to decide on the appeal filed in February, Muda on April 26 then filed its second lawsuit.
Just five minutes before the August 12 court hearing started for Muda’s second lawsuit, the home minister finally told Muda of his decision to reject its appeal against RoS’ refusal to register the party.
By the time the home minister’s decision was given, it had already been 189 days since Muda appealed.
Muda on August 18 then withdrew its second lawsuit since it had become academic with the home minister finally giving his decision.
On August 25, Muda then filed its third lawsuit to seek to compel the home minister and RoS to register it as a political party.