Singapore's highest court on Monday refused to overturn a law that criminalizes gay sex, saying that litigation is not the best way to resolve the issue.

Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon of the Singapore Court of Appeal argued in upholding a lower court's decision dismissing three challenges to the law that withdrawing the law was “a matter beyond our remit.”

Menon said that a political resolution was more appropriate.

“This is so for good reason because litigation is a zero-sum, adversarial process with win-lose outcomes,” said Menon. “The political process, in contrast, seeks to mediate – it strives for compromises and consensus in which no one side has to lose all.”

Menon added that it was “unnecessary” for the court to address the constitutionality of Section 377A because it is not being enforced.

“They do not face any real and credible threat of prosecution under 377A at this time,” he said. “Therefore, [they] do not have the standing to pursue their constitutional challenges to that provision.”

Singapore-based LGBTQ rights group Ready4Repeal called the ruling “a small step in the right direction” that “does not go far enough to provide real protection to the LGBTQ+ community, who continue to be impacted by the cascading effects of Section 377A.”

Ready4Repeal has been lobbying the government to repeal the colonial-era law. A petition started by the group in 2018 has received more than 51,000 online signatures.