Assistant Professor of Law
School of Law, SMU
THE COURT OF APPEAL’S judgment of 5 July in Vellama d/o Marie Muthu v Attorney-General – popularly known as the Hougang by-election case – shows that the Court sees its role as policing the margins rather than involving itself in the heart of politics.
The decision came as a surprise to those used to a judicial stance that is fairly deferential towards the Government. It is one of only a handful of cases in which the courts have not accepted the Government’s interpretation of the Constitution.