An Indian-origin Singaporean judge has been sworn in by Brunei’s Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah as a judicial commissioner of the Supreme Court of the sultanate.
Justice Kannan Ramesh’s appointment is for a two-year period and the 54-year-old Justice will continue to hold his position as a full-time judge of the Supreme Court of Singapore. Justice Ramesh was appointed a judicial commissioner to the Singapore Supreme Court in May 2015.
“I am humbled by the invitation to be a member of the Brunei Darussalam judiciary. It is an honour and a privilege. I very much look forward to working with (the Brunei Supreme Court’s) Chief Justice Steven Chong and the many august members of the Brunei Bench,” Ramesh said.
As a judicial commissioner of the Supreme Court of Brunei, Justice Ramesh will spend up to a month in Brunei each year to read, hear and write judgments primarily on commercial cases and certain civil ones.
All part-time judges appointed to the Supreme Court of Brunei are designated as judicial commissioners. This has no bearing on the judge’s seniority nor his jurisdiction, powers, duties or authority when hearing cases, the report said.
Welcoming Justice Ramesh’s new appointment, Chief Justice of Singapore Sundaresh Menon said, “This appointment will strengthen cooperation between the two courts and deepen the already close ties between Singapore and Brunei. It will also raise Singapore’s international standing and reputation as a legal and judicial centre.”
There have been other cases of a Singaporean judge being appointed in a foreign court. Justice Quentin Loh was appointed to the Supreme Court of Fiji in 2018 and Justice Judith Prakash has been appointed to the Dubai International Financial Centre Courts since 2017.