English Law In The Straits Settlements

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Before the British occupied the Malay Peninsular, it existed the Laws of Melaka also known as Hukum Kanun Melaka which was compiled during the reign of Muzaffar Shah throughout the years 1446- 1459, which covered area such as criminal offences, commercial transactions, family matters, evidence and procedure and the conditions of a ruler. This specific law was very much influenced by the Islamic Law and was one of the important pre- customary laws that existed in the Malay Peninsular.

The introduction of English Law into the Straits Settlement began with the discovery of Penang by Captain Francis Light on behalf of the East India Company in August 1786. Later in 1824, together with Penang, Singapore and Malacca were grouped as one and were referred to as the Straits Settlements. English law became the law of the land through the implementation of the Charters of Justices in 1807 and in 1826.

The Charters established a judicial system and made the English common law applicable to the inhabitants of the land so far as religion and customs permit. In Penang, the First Charter of Justice of 1807 introduced the first ever judicial court which had similar jurisdictions as the courts in England and in 1826, the Second Charter of Justice was introduced into the 3 states of the Straits Settlements which had minor amendments.

With the above as an introduction, I agree with the statement as I believe that the introduction of English Law in the Straits Settlements had reversed

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