IPOH, March 27 - The Perak state secretary says the refusal by former Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin to return his official car until his legal case against Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir is ruled on by the court is a misunderstanding on the former's part.
State secretary Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Hashim said Mohammad Nizar, as a party to the case, must surrender the official car first while waiting for the outcome of the case.
"If the court's decision favours him, then he can have the car. Ordinarily, he will also have the right to get due compensation," Abdul Rahman said in a press release here today.
He said the state constitution said that a official car must be returned to the state if an officer or member of the administration (Menteri Besar/executive councillors) was transfered to another department, retired or stepped down from a state government position.
"Even though the regulations require that a state vehicle be returned as soon as the person does not have a position normally a fair period is given on humanitarian grounds to enable the officer or former menteri besar or executive councillor to manage affairs like shifting and other personal matters," he said.
He said normally the officer would return the official vehicle in a period of one to two days or a week.
Abdul Rahman said up till now the Perak state secretary's office had sent three official letter to Mohammad Nizar besides making requests verbally that the Toyota Camry 2.4V with the number plate AGS 10 be returned.
"After the first letter was issued on Feb 5, a follow-up letter dated Feb 23 was issued to the former menteri besar. A third letter dated March 3 was issued but till now the car has not been returned," he said.
To date, he said, five cars - a Proton Perdana Executive, two Proton Perdanas, a Naza Sorento and a Mercedes Benz 4WD - used by the former menteri besar had been returned on Feb 23 while his official residence was handed over on Feb 27.
Abdul Rahman said the press release was meant to clear any confusion and queries by the public that Mohammad Nizar was alleging that he had the right to use the Perak menteri besar's official car.
"There is also information that I have received that says that Mohammad Nizar still receives salary and full allowances as Perak Menteri Besar. Also that a sign 'Official Residence of the Menteri Besar of Perak Darul Ridzuan' or something to that effect was fixed on his rented house," he said. - Bernama