Monday, March 2, 2009

Zambry: Emergency sitting a threat to national security - Malaysiakini

Andrew Ong | Mar 2, 09 7:58pm

The Perak BN government today issued a stern warning against Pakatan Rakyat's attempt to convene an emergency assembly sitting tomorrow.

"If anyone is involved in tomorrow's assembly, the state government would not compromise with anyone or any group which threatens national security, particularly in Perak," said Menteri Besar Zambry Abd Kadir from a prepared statement.

Zambry said this during a press conference in his office this evening as riot police took up positions at the entrance of the state secretariat building.

The state assembly is located in the second floor of the state secretariat.

The state is currently set for a showdown tomorrow as Pakatan state representatives are expected to turn up for the sitting as planned, although the state secretariat building would be closed off.

Earlier a state circular stated that the main entrance to the state secretariat would be sealed tomorrow and that all scheduled appointments are to be cancelled.

At the press conference - which was rescheduled four times - Zambry also reiterated that the planned emergency sitting called by speaker V Sivakumar was illegal because the Sultan has not given his consent.

"I urge Sivakumar to act according to the law and think rationally, in line with his oath to uphold the laws of Perak and his pledge of loyalty to the Sultan," Zambry added.

Zambry cited Articles 6, 8 and 11 of the Perak constitution to show that Sivakumar must seek consent from the Sultan.

"It is quite clear that whatever he wants to do must be done with consent of the Sultan," he stressed.

Two suits against speaker

Meanwhile, Zambry also clarified that thus far, his government had initiated two legal actions against Sivakumar.

perak state assembly and v sivakumarThe first was filed last Friday where Zambry sought a declaration that Sivakumar's decision to accept the undated resignation letters of the Changkat Jering, Behrang and Jelapang assemblypersons was null and void. The three have since become BN-friendly independents.

The second suit - filed today - was to seek a declaration that Sivakumar's decision on Feb 18 to suspend Zambry and his six exco members was unconstitutional, ultra-vires and thus null and void.

In that suit, Zambry is also seeking a declaration that he and his six exco members have the right to attend and participate in any assembly sitting as well as perform their functions.

He also wanted a declaration that the state assembly is not bound by any order, instructions or directions by Sivakumar.

Zambry also appeared to be at a lost when presented with a state secretariat circular which stated that the state secretariat building would be closed to the public tomorrow.

"Who did it? It is not from me. It is from the state secretary... you have to ask him. I have nothing to do with it. Only now have I seen this," he said.

Brief press conference

During the brief 15-minute press conference, Zambry was accompanied by his state representatives and former Menteri Besar Tajol Rosli.

Below are excerpts from the press conference:

Question: Is this not a violation of the doctrine of separation of powers (in asking the court to interfere)?

Zambry: It is not. We have consulted our lawyers.

What about your personal position? Do you think that the speaker is the sole authority to interpret the standing orders?

He is not above the law.

Isn't this setting precedence where the speaker's decision can be challenged in court?

He has to understand that the speaker must not act above the law.

Why your government didn't challenge the validity of the emergency sitting in court?

We are going to file it soon. The most important thing is (to seek court declaration on) the position of the three independents and our position as menteri besar and exco.

1 comment:

DatoSeri said...

Threat to national security? Clearly sound like a pretext for invoking ISA.