Chief justice pens touching farewell to colleagues

Richard Malanjum signed off as chief justice with Frank Sinatra’s song My Way.

PUTRAJAYA: “All I ask from you is to protect the judiciary no matter what others may say,” said Richard Malanjum in his farewell message to the judges, officers and employees of the judiciary upon his retirement as chief justice yesterday.

He said the judiciary is the last bastion of justice and the people’s last refuge for fairness and equality under the rule of law.

“Please do not let it down from within or outside, even if you may feel you are not getting your fair due. Give your best, expect nothing!” he said.

Malanjum retired after serving the judiciary for 27 years. He had taken leave earlier and is currently abroad.

He declined an official farewell ceremony but sent out a farewell message to the judiciary staff yesterday evening.

The message with the heading Au Revoir opened with a few lines from Frank Sinatra’s famous song, My Way: “(And) now, the end is near. And so I face the final curtain. My friends …”

He extended his apology for not bidding farewell in person, describing such a moment as his Achilles heel.

“I have nothing much to say, only to seek your forgiveness if I have been tough on you.

“I meant no malice. Thank you very much for all the wonderful years I had with the institution. Your unwavering support and assistance made life in the judiciary interesting and fulfilling,” he said.

He extended his gratitude to all the staff in the judiciary, including in his office, officers in the research unit, his personal aide and those who worked for him when he was chief judge of Sabah and Sarawak.

“I wish you all the best of luck and good health. If you need any assistance of any kind, let me know, and I will be there to the best of my ability.

“To all my brother and sister judges in the Federal Court, I will miss the fun and warmest friendship one can ever experience. Keep up the excellent work. The nation needs you especially at this time of our nation’s history,” he said.

Malanjum also thanked the judges of the Court of Appeal and High Court for their good work.

He ended his message with: “To one and all, once again I say thank you very much and au revoir!”

Malanjum, the first Sabahan to hold the judiciary’s top post, served as chief justice for nine months. He was chief judge of Sabah and Sarawak for 12 years.

Malanjum was sworn in as the ninth chief justice on July 11, 2018, replacing Md Raus Sharif, who resigned in the same month.

He attained his constitutional retirement age of 66 in October last year and was given a six-month extension, which ended yesterday.