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"All Power Has Legal Limits" – The Principle of Legality as a Constitutional Principle of Judicial Review

Jaclyn L Neo

(2017) 29 SAcLJ 667

The now familiar passage in Chng Suan Tze v Minister for Home Affairs asserting that all power has legal limits has been declared to be a principle of legality that functions as a “basic principle” in constitutional and administrative judicial review. This article provides a close examination of case jurisprudence in Singapore to determine exactly how this passage has influenced the development of this area of law. Specifically, it argues that while the principle of legality has been used to justify and expand reviewability of both statutory and constitutional executive powers, there is scope to develop the principle to further extend the scope of reviewability as well as to justify a more robust approach to judicial review in Singapore.