Thursday, April 30, 2009

Perak Pakatan reps to attend May 7 assembly - Star


Picture courtesy of Malaysiakini

IPOH: Perak Pakatan Rakyat assemblymen, including ousted mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin, will attend the state assembly sitting on May 7.

Nizar however noted that the attendance would be under protest for the notices on the assembly sent out without the knowledge of Speaker V. Sivakumar.

“We will attend the assembly still, out of respect to the Speaker.

“We will be there to honour whatever decision the Speaker makes,” he told reporters after attending a briefing with Pakatan-elected village chiefs here Thursday.

Amongst the much-awaited decision is the seating arrangement in the House, which will be indicated by Sivakumar himself.

Nizar said that to date, the sitting arrangement practised previously would remain unchanged and Pakatan’s place was still on the right side of the Speaker, where the government of the day sits.

“As far as we know, the sitting arrangement is still status quo. However, this is still subject to any decision made by the Speaker to relocate the seats,” he said.

Nizar also said that Pakatan had not fielded any questions to the Barisan Nasional government for the usual question and answer session in the House.

As such, the session would be scrapped from the assembly agenda.

”We have no questions for them because questions are only posed to a legal government. ”We do not recognise this (Barisan) government,” he said.

Nizar also said that Pakatan would not respond to a recent notice sent by assembly secretary Abdullah Antong Sabri asking all assemblymen to propose a candidate to replace the Speaker.

The letter was sent in view of the possible success of a motion filed by Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir to remove Sivakumar from the Speaker’s post.

“We will not respond to this because the Speaker is still valid,” he said.

On the motion, Nizar said that Sivakumar still reserved the right to reject it or allow it to be brought into the House.

“It is up to him to decide. Any state assemblyman has the right to file a motion but the Speaker decides whether to shelve it or bring it up for discussions,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nizar said he was unable to predict what would happen during the much-anticipated May 7 sitting and told reporters to be patient.

“On May 7, we will all have a nice cup of tea and go for breakfast with all the assemblymen.

“You are welcome to join us if you so wish. The rest, I do not know what will happen,” he jokingly told reporters.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Perak State Assembly needs to sit on May 7: Zambry - Sun

IPOH (April 29, 2009) : The Perak State Assembly will still need to sit on May 7 despite there being a dispute in the courts as to who is the rightful menteri besar of Perak, said Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir.

Zambry said this was because his position as mentri besar was valid as long as the courts had not taken a decision on the matter.

"I and my executive councillors (excos) have the right to occupy the seats allocated to us. The Speaker must respect this unless the courts decide otherwise," he told reporters after chairing the weekly state executive council meeting here today.

On calls by former mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin yesterday for the May 7 sitting to be deferred until the courts decide whether he or Zambry was the rightful mentri besar, Zambry said that calling the state assembly sitting was not within his powers.

"As Mentri Besar I can only make a recommendation but the final say as to when the sitting should take place is with the Sultan Azlan Shah of Perak. It was the Sultan who fixed the date ( May 7)," he said.

Yesterday, the Federal Court in a unanimous decision said it was for the High Court in Kuala Lumpur to determine who was the rightful Mentri Besar of Perak. The High Court will hear the case on May 4.

Move to remove Sivakumar as Perak Speaker - Sun

IPOH (April 29, 2009) :

Perak Legislative Assembly Secretary Abdullah Antong Sabri, today confirmed that his office had received a motion last week to remove V. Sivakumar as Speaker of the Perak State Assembly at its sitting on May 7.

He also confirmed that he had posted letters to all the Perak State Assemblymen on the matter and had attached together with the letters the nomination forms for the new Speaker.

Although Abdullah said the matter should not have been announced before the State Assembly sitting, several news portals today reported that Abdullah, in his letter, had stated that the nomination forms for the new Speaker should be submitted together with the agreement form of the selected candidate to the State Legislative Assembly office by tomorrow at the latest.

"The letters were sent administratively. It should have been for the information and action of the State Assemblymen concerned," he said when contacted.

He declined further comment on the matter.

Meanwhile, Senior Executive Councillor Datuk Hamidah Osman, when contacted, confirmed that she had seconded the motion to remove Sivakumar, which was proposed by Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir and sent to the office of the Perak Legislative Assembly Secretary last Thursday.

Zambry, when contacted, refused to confirm whether he had proposed the notice for a vote of no-confidence against Sivakumar as reported by the media today

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Postpone Perak assembly — Nizar - Malaysian Insider

By Debra Chong

PUTRAJAYA, April 28 — Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin wants the May 7 Perak State Legislative Assembly to be postponed, pending the outcome of his lawsuit at the Kuala Lumpur High Court.

Nizar noted his political rival faction, the Barisan Nasional (BN), may feel pressured to hold an assembly before May 13 because they consider it the deadline to prevent the State legislature from being automatically dissolved.

“For Pakatan Rakyat, we have already had a legal assembly below the tree on March 3, so for us Pakatan Rakyat, we can have one before September.

“But Barisan Nasional is quite worried because they feel pressured to have one before May 13,” he told reporters at the Palace of Justice here after the Federal Court unanimously ruled today to reject his political rival Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir’s bid to fast-track the resolution of their dispute on who is the lawful mentri besar of Perak.

The five-man bench decided the High Court had to clear up the various disputed issues raised by Nizar first before it could make a decision on the case.

“Today’s decision showed the May 7 assembly should be delayed,” Nizar pointed out.

“When we talk about today’s decision by the Federal Court, it shines a light at the end... that the final remedy should be the dissolution of the assembly,” he added.

The 52-year-old newly-elected MP for Bukit Gantang looked very tense before the court hearing this morning, smiling tightly and speaking in curt tones to reporters who approached him.

But he was all smiles when the court ruled in his favour. Leaping from his seat in the public gallery, he rushed to hug Sulaiman Abdullah, a senior lawyer and one-time Bar Council president who had argued his case in court.

Nizar is suing Zambry for usurping the office of the mentri besar, which he claims is unlawful as he has not quit the post officially.

He has consistently resisted efforts to drag in the Perak Sultan into a legal battle, despite attempts by certain political quarters to do so.

Asked if he regretted having to file his affidavit revealing the details of his meeting with the Sultan of Perak in early February, Nizar said he had been reluctant originally but indicated he had been forced to “respond because those facts are what I’m going to say.”

He noted “the public will know what transpired between myself and Tuanku so they will make the judgment.

“At the end of the day, we don’t want the court to decide for the people. The government of the day must be decided by the rakyat. The court is just a way for us to seek a solution,” Nizar said.

His lawyer Sulaiman highlighted that they wanted to avoid “a hasty solution” which may lead to more complicated problems later on.

“Our view has always been go through the proper route: Go through the High Court, go through the Court of Appeal and finally come to the Federal Court with all the issues settled,” said Sulaiman, who welcomed the Federal Court’s stand that the High Court should settle all disputes before letting the apex court make the ultimate decision.

“It is not an immediate issue of who runs Perak that matters. These are fundamental issues that will arise for the country for many, many years to come and unless we get it right at the beginning, we are going to face a lot of problems in future,” he said.

Ipoh council foils attempt to re-build ‘tree of democracy’ plaque - Malaysian Insider

IPOH, April 28 – The Ipoh City Council (MBI) today foiled an attempt by a group of men to re-build the ‘Tree of Democracy’ plaque that it had earlier demolished on March 15.

The Pakatan Rakyat coalition in Perak had built the monument to mark an emergency state assembly meeting held under the rain tree on March 3.

According to a MBI spokesman, enforcement officers from the council had ordered a group of men to stop work immediately since no approval had been given to carry out such work.

“When the MBI enforcement unit arrived, two workers were busy working on the 2m by 0.6m site while the rest left the area upon seeing the officers,” said the MBI spokesman.

He added that the two men were asked to stop work and remove all building material from the site.

Meanwhile, Kepayang state assemblyman Loke Chee Yan said since the Opposition had intended to re-build the memorial monument, they should have submitted an application.

“Maybe there was a miscommunication in the date to start work or the contractor had started work before the approval. However, we will try to resolve the matter. If need be, we will follow the proper procedure in submitting an application,” Loke said.

The plaque was put up by the DAP, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and PAS coalition to mark the site where a “state assembly” was held by 27 state assemblymen after they were disallowed entry into the Bangunan Perak Darul Ridzuan.

The original plaque at the memorial monument was demolished by MBI last month since it was deemed an illegal structure under Section 46 (1) (a) of the Street, Drainage and Building Act 1974.

Fragments of the damaged plaque were later auctioned by the Pakatan coalition and RM42,900 was collected to re-build the plaque. – Bernama

Federal Court Sends Zambry-Nizar Suit Back To High Court - Bernama

PUTRAJAYA, April 28 (Bernama) -- The Federal Court today ruled that the dispute between Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir and Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin on who is the rightful Perak Menteri Besar will be heard and determined by the High Court.

The five-men bench headed by Court of Appeal President Tan Sri Alauddin Mohd Sheriff unanimously held that there were disputed facts in this case relating to two affidavits affirmed by Nizar and Perak Legal Adviser Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid.

The proceedings to examine Kamal's affidavit will be heard before High Court Judge Datuk Abdul Aziz Abd Rahim on Monday.

This is the second time the case was remitted back to the High Court.

The first was on March 23 when the Federal Court ruled that issues involving the interpretation of Article 16(6) of the Perak Constitution must be heard and decided at the High Court, and could only be brought to the Federal Court by way of appeal.

Alauddin, Chief Judge of Malaya Datuk Ariffin Zakaria and Federal Court justices Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinuddin, Datuk Wira Mohd Ghazali Mohd Yusuf and Datuk James Foong were today supposed to hear Zambry's application, filed on April 21, to seek a declaration that he is the rightful Menteri Besar.

With the sitting of the five-man panel, Nizar's request for a nine man-bench to hear the case was turned down.

Earlier in the proceedings today, Nizar's counsel Sulaiman Abdullah objected to Zambry's application on the ground that there were disputed facts on the dissolution of the Perak State Legislative Assembly which was scheduled to be heard at the High Court next week.

He said there was material contradiction between what was affirmed by Kamal in his affidavit with what actually had happened in the meeting between Nizar and the Sultan Azlan Shah on Perak on Feb 4.

"I affirm that when I had an audience with His Royal Highness (H.R.H) the Sultan, I never stated and did not inform, and never suggested to H.R.H. the Sultan that there was loss of confidence in me as Menteri Besar by the majority of the State Legislative Assembly. I also never recommended to H.R.H. the Sultan to dissolve the State Legislative Assembly in accordance with Article 16(6) of the Perak Government Constitution.

"Referring to the legal adviser's affidavit, I state that Datuk Ahmad Kamal's version on what had happened was wrong and inaccurate," said Sulaiman, reading out the affidavit affirmed by Nizar.

He also submitted that Kamal had represented Zambry when the case was called for mention before Judicial Commissioner Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof on Feb 18. "Datuk Kamal had appeared for Zambry and clearly showed that he was not neutral," said Sulaiman.

He also said that on the principle of "res judicata" (a matter already judged) the application should not be heard by the Federal Court as the same application on the same issue had been determined by the same court on March 23.

Counsel Datuk Cecil Abraham for Zambry said in reply that there was documentary evidence based on two letters written by Nizar to the Sultan of Perak on Feb 4 and 5 to show that there were no disputed facts as claimed by the respondent.

He also said that the principle of res judicata was not applicable because the issue of Article 63 did not arise at the hearing before the Federal Court on March 23.

Present during the proceedings were Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail as the intervener, counsel Mohd Reza Hassan who holds a watching brief for Barisan Nasional and assistant Perak legal adviser Zulqarnain Hassan.

Outside the courtroom, Nizar told reporters that today's decision was a sign that the Perak political crisis could reach a final settlement.

"I hope the State Legislative Assembly sitting on May 7 will be postponed until the dispute is settled at the High Court. No need for us to be hasty because many facts are being disputed here," he said.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Zambry tells Pakatan to behave at May 7 assembly sitting - Malaysian Insider

IPOH, April 25 — Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Zambry Abd Kadir has told his ousted archrival not to act childlishly and fight for the mentri besar’s chair in the state assembly sitting on May 7.

Zambry has also advised both the Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat lawmakers to be on their best behaviour when the assembly convenes.

Saying that the assembly would go on as planned, Zambry said: “I hope none of us will resort to behaving like children during the assembly and let the public see this happening.

“There is no need to fight for seats — we (BN) never did that when Nizar was mentri besar,” he told reporters at the 33rd Perak Malay Chamber of Commerce annual general meeting here today.

Zambry, who has been dodging questions on BN’s plans for the assembly sitting, also said that there would be no move to table a motion of confidence in himself as the mentri besar.

“We already have the majority in the House so there is no need to move such a motion.”

He noted that although the BN and PR had an equal number of assemblymen, 28 each, the three Independents would swell BN’s support because of a pact signed with them.

Such a pact, he explained, was similar to the one which binds the three component parties in the PR together — DAP, PKR and PAS.

“It is enough to prove that we have the majority numbers with us – 31 assemblymen. They have to accept it.

“Similarly in the past, we accepted it although till today, PR is not even a registered coalition,” he said.

On whether BN plans to table a motion to remove Speaker V. Sivakumar, Zambry refused to comment.

He smiled and said: “Wait and see.”

It is believed that the much-anticipated assembly will only sit for two days and will have very few items on its agenda.

There will be no debate on Sultan Azlan Shah’s speech and there will also be no question and answer session as the PR has refused to submit questions to the BN government.

BN is also expected to attempt to remove the Speaker through a vote of no confidence.

However, it can be anticipated that the Speaker will reject such a motion.

Meanwhile, Nizar and some former state executive council members from PR have hinted that they plan to take their seats on the right side of the Speaker, which is where the government of the day sits in the House.

How to avoid a political crisis... just go back to the people - Malaysiakini

Hafiz Yatim | Apr 25, 09 6:08pm

No British monarch has rejected an application to dissolve its parliament, and similarly in Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah should have dissolved the state legislative assembly when ousted menteri besar Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin made an application.

Constitutional lawyer, Tommy Thomas said throughout British history there was never any attempts made by the monarchy to reject a prime minister's application to dissolve the parliament.

He said this at a forum held at the Bar Council titled: "Perak Crisis: Constitutional, Legal or Political".

Thomas noted that throughout Commonwealth history there was only one instance when the Canadian governor, Lord Julian Byng, did not accede to the request of its Prime Minister Arthur Meigen to dissolve parliament following an impending vote of no-confidence.

"It resulted in somewhat undesirable effect akin to what we see in Perak. To avert a crisis, it is wise for the rulers to accede to a request to a dissolution like in the Perak matter," Thomas noted.

Snap elections will resolve the issue

"When there is a political problem and when faced with possible constitutional problems, go back to the people. You will never go wrong," he said.

As in the case of Perak, Thomas said although we have a constitutional monarchy and they have the prerogative, questions are being raised over what if they (royalty) are wrong in not approving the dissolution.

Hence, the senior lawyer said to prevent such a scenario, it would be wise to go back to the people.

"Let them decide whether they want Pakatan Rakyat or Barisan Nasional," he said, adding the Perak impasse should not have to go through the courts and that there should have been snap elections to resolve the present scenario.

Besides him, the other panelists were senior lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah and Aliran exco member and economist Dr Subramaniam Pillay.

Approximately 100 people attended the forum which was moderated by Bar Council president Ragunath Kesavan.

Subramaniam calls for anti-hopping law

Aliran exco member, Subramaniam called on the government to have an anti-hopping law as he said voters selected their elected representatives based on their party affiliations.

Subramaniam, who happens to be from Perak and is not a lawyer unlike the two, said by having such laws it could help avert such a crisis.

"If our elected representatives decide to change party, a by-election should have been called as they would be made answerable to the public and avoid such a scenario," he said.

He also questioned the independence of the Election Commission and the judiciary when dealing with matters pertaining to Pakatan Rakyat.

"It seems they have become a tool of the ruling BN government," he said.

Pointing to the judiciary, Subramaniam said he cannot understand the haste of the judges in hearing the Perak matter and that he had lost hope on the impartiality of the country's courts.

"It should be allowed to go through the normal process of having the application heard at the High Court, then Court of Appeal and then the Federal Court," he said.

Vital to have an independent judiciary

"Why bring the matter directly to the apex court when the matter have yet to be decided by the High Court where the application is filed," asked Subramaniam.

Subramaniam, who is also an economist, pointed out that an independent judiciary is vital to attract foreign investments as the court is the last bastion to handle disputes.

On the EC, the Aliran exco member noted the task before the commission was to hold elections and it should not be questioning whether it was wise for one to be held, he said in referring to the expected Penanti by-election.

Subramaniam also questioned why the resignation letters of Mohd Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering), Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) and Hee Yit Foong were not accepted. Being adults they should have known what they were signing into and should have been held liable for it.

The Aliran exco member noted that despite the uncertainty surrounding the Perak issue, the people have got to know the constitutional law matter better and also PAS and DAP who were once bitter enemies had managed to bond well together.

"This point is important, (a moderate PAS and DAP) working together, as this would form a strong basis for a two-party system in the country," he said

"BN also have to buck up to ensure they remain in power in Perak. As for Pakatan, consisting of PAS, DAP and PKR, the episode would result in the coalition growing stronger and it would be a viable alternative come the next general election," he said.

Shafee: May 7 would be a chaotic day

Meanwhile, Shafee the other lawyer on the panel, was asked what the public can expect to see on May 7 (when the Perak assembly have its seating). He replied: "Chaos".

"Can you imagine what would happen on that day if the Sultan of Perak comes and he would be greeted by two menteris besar. Or what if the Perak speaker decide to banish Zambry Abdul Kadir (BN menteri besar) and his exco members or the three assemblypersons."

"Fortunately, there may not be live coverage because if there is, people will be glued to their televisions," he joked.

Shafee, who had represented Umno in numerous cases also pointed out that the apparent resignation letters signed by the three assemblyperson should not have been accepted.

He said they signed under duress and questions are being raised whether the speaker had consulted them before handing over the resignation letters.

"The speaker should have asked the three elected assemblypersons before submitting their resignations," he said.

Shafee also pointed out the suspension order meted to Zambry and his exco were different from that of Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo.

"The Speaker V Sivakumar never brought their suspension before the house and hence the 18 months and 12 months suspension was wrong. In Gobind's case, the matter was brought before the house and deliberated for two hours before the suspension order was given," he said.

Shafee said nobody including legislators (i.e. elected people) should be above the law, as this would result in them having unlimited powers to break the law.

National Press Discourse - Perak Crisis

April 24, 2009

Thanks to Ahiruddin Atan (Rocky Bru) and the National Press Club for organising this event. The event which was held at the Ipoh Town Hall was attended by close to 200 participants. It started at 9pm, 1 hour behind time. 3 prominent Speakers were invited to the forum; Muhamad Shafee Abdullah, Hafarizam Harun (UMNO Lawyer) and Nga Hock Cheh (DAP Perak Legal Bureau Chairman).

Rocky Bru started by thanking the participants, the speakers and the state government for sponsoring the hall and food. As expected most of the participants are BN related.

Muhamad Shafee then took the stage by delivering his keynote address briefing participants on the political event that have taken place since March 8, 2008. Video clips of his speech are as follows:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

My personal opinion is that Shafee (with due respect) has missed the point that is a new MB cannot be appointed until the existing one has resigned. Not merely perceived to have resigned.

Sumber lain: Pemuda Besut:

Krisis politik Perak yang berlanjutan sejak 5 Februari lalu adalah satu misi terancang yang didalangi dan dicetuskan oleh Umno dan Barisan Nasional menurut pengerusi biro undang-undang DAP Perak, Nga Hock Cheh.

Beliau yang berucap sebagai salah seorang ahli panel Jumaat lalu pada forum bertajuk “Perak and BN Government: Legal or Constitutional Grab” anjuran National Press Club kelmarin memberitahu kemelut politik itu adalah angkara tidak sabar Umno dan BN untuk berkuasa di Perak setelah Pakatan Rakyat dinobatkan sebagai kerajaan mutlak pilihan rakyat menerusi Pilihan Raya Umum ke 12 Mac tahun lalu.

Nga yang merupakan seorang peguam kanan menyifatkan krisis politik Perak sebagai satu tragedi yang menimpa rakyat negeri itu..

Menurut Nga lagi tindakan meletak jawatan Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri Behrang, Jamaluddin Mat Radzi, ADUN Changkat Jering, Kapt (B) Mohd Osman Jailu, kedua-duanya daripada Parti Keadilan Rakyat, serta ADUN Jelapang daripada DAP, Hee Yit Foong adalah titik tolak kepada rancangan rampasan kuasa Umno dan BN yang menyaksikan kejatuhan kerajaan Pakatan Rakyat di negeri ini.

Beliau mengandaikan rampasan kuasa itu sebagai seekor lembu yang dilepaskan dari tali pengikatnya.

Peristiwa kudeta haram itu kata beliau lagi tidak berhenti di situ sahaja tetapi dalam masa yang sama turut mengheret institusi raja-raja, bidang legislatif yang diketuai Speaker dan institusi kehakiman.

Jelas Nga pembabitan ketiga-tiga pihak termasuk kuasa eksekutif sebenarnya tidak banyak membantu untuk menyelesaikan kemelut politik secara adil malah ia semakin menyulitkan keadaan sehingga mendedahkan peranan badan kehakiman yang kelihatan tidak lagi berkecuali.

Beliau yang yang menjadi salah seorang anggota panel peguam Speaker, V. Sivakumar menyimpulkan bahawa krisis tersebut itu hanya dapat diselesaikan jika merujuk semula kepada rakyat untuk membuat penentuan mutlak.

Nga berkata hanya pilihan raya mampu menyelesaikan masalah dan jika ini berlaku tidak ada siapa yang akan mempersoal dan mempertikaikannya.

Sehubungan itu beliau menafikan dakwaan seorang anggota panel forum, Datuk Shafee Abdullah yang mengatakan krisis politik bermula sejak 8 Mac tahun iaitu selepas keputusan pilihan raya umum lalu.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Nizar wants full panel of judges for Federal Court - Malaysian Insider

By Debra Chong

KUALA LUMPUR, April 24 — In the latest development over the lawsuit to decide the lawful Perak mentri besar, Pakatan Rakyat’s Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin is asking for the full panel of nine judges to hear his arguments next Tuesday when the case moves to the Federal Court in Putrajaya.

Nizar, who maintains he is the rightful mentri besar as he has not resigned from the post, is suing Barisan Nasional’s Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir for usurping the office.

He is also objecting to Zambry’s application to refer several constitutional questions to the Federal Court to decide, claiming the questions posed were irrelevant to his suit.

“They keep saying ‘Sultan, Sultan, Sultan’ but we’re not challenging the Sultan, only Zambry,” said one of Nizar’s battery of lawyers, Leong Cheok Keng, referring to the list of questions drawn up by Zambry for the apex court to answer.

Leong told The Malaysian Insider a letter was written to Chief Justice (CJ) Tan Sri Zaki Azmi earlier this week requesting the full bench of nine judges as it concerned the “life and death of a regime” in Perak.

Leong explained that a full bench sits in criminal cases where the mandatory punishment is death, to show the importance of the matter.

He pointed out that Nizar’s case was just as important and deserved to be treated with the same gravity, as the outcome of the court decision would decide the continuity or termination of Nizar’s administration.

Asked if Nizar was also requesting a fresh panel of judges to replace the five who had previously heard the matter when it was first brought up, Leong said the letter did not state as such but hoped the CJ would take into consideration the need for “fresh minds” to hear the arguments from both sides.

He noted that the judges who had heard the matter a short while ago are unlikely to change their minds so swiftly. But Leong stressed they were not trying to “dictate” what the CJ should do.

Zambry: Camry auction not a loss to state - Malaysian Insider

IPOH, April 24 - Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir said today that the decision to auction off 16 Toyota Camry cars, which were purchased by the previous state government of the DAP-PKR-PAS coalition, would not be a loss to the state government.

He said the opening price for the vehicles was RM148,000, which is the current market price, but added that bidders might bid at a higher price for the cars, which were bought for RM158,000 each.

He said a claim by former menteri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin that it would be a loss of public funds to auction off the cars was baseless.

"We do not deny that the value of the cars has depreciated, but in an auction, the bidders may bid at a higher price," he told reporters after opening a seminar for young entrepreneurs here.

Zambry also said the state government had no plans yet to replace the Camry cars, which were used as official vehicles by state executive councillors of the Pakatan Rakyat government, as the official cars, the Proton Perdana V6, could still be used.

"I have instructed State Financial officer Datuk Jamaluddin Al Amini to look into the matter, including to discuss with Proton Perdana, on maintenance of the Proton Perdana V6 cars," he added.

The previous Pakatan Rakyat state government had bought the Toyota Camry cars to replace the Perdana V6 cars which were used for four years by the Barisan Nasional government, prior to the coalition losing the state to the opposition in the March 2008 general election. - Bernama

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Busy day in court for Nizar in Perak government impasse - Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, April 23 — The High Court here today allowed Attorney-General (AG) Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail to intervene in Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin’s suit challenging the legitimacy of Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir’s appointment as Perak mentri besar.

Picture courtesy of Malaysiakini

Justice Datuk Abdul Aziz Abd Rahim, in his oral decision, said the AG, as the guardian of the public interest, should be allowed to intervene as the issue was of public importance and public interest.

He also said that the issue involved interpretation of Article 16 of the Perak Constitution which is similar to Article 43 of the Federal Constitution.

“Of course the court can invite the AG as a friend of court, but after considering the main issue here, it is my view to allow the AG to intervene and to help the court, more so when the issue here is a novel one.

One mentri besar is appointed and the other one has not resigned,” said Abdul Aziz who is the third judge to hear the application after the Federal Court sent it back to the High Court.

The first judge was Judicial Commissioner Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof who recused himself while the second judge, Lau Bee Lan, had referred the matter to the Federal Court for determination of constitutional isssues.

Earlier, senior federal counsel Datuk Kamaluddin Md Said submitted that the AG should be allowed to intervene as the application for judicial review required the interpretation of the Perak Constitution which would also affect other state constitutions with similar provisions.

Sulaiman Abdullah, counsel for Mohammad Nizar, objected on the ground that the AG had failed to show any necessity for him to intervene in the proceeding.

“This is a Perak matter. The actual situation here is that the applicant (Mohammad Nizar) and the respondent (Zambry) are both claiming to be the mentri besar. There is no direct involvement of the federal government in this issue.

The judge also fixed May 4 to hear the application by Mohammad Nizar to cross-examine Perak legal advisor Datuk Kamal Md Shahid on the statement which he claimed was inconsistent with Mohammad Nizar’s statement in the affidavit filed in the suit.


Late yesterday, Nizar filed an objection to Zambry’s application for the Federal Court to declare him the legitimate mentri besar.

Nizar made the objection through an affidavit in reply filed at the court’s registry here through legal firm Messrs Leong & Tan.

In the affidavit, Nizar said among others that the questions suggested by Zambry for the court to decide could not solve the political impasse.

He said the issues, whether the post of mentri besar could and/or had been vacated in the situation where the mentri besar wished, and had advised for the dissolution of the State Legislative Assembly under several circumstances including the absence of a motion of no confidence being passed and adopted in and by the Assembly against the mentri besar, could still not be answered.

He said, the questions suggested by Zambry for the court to decide were irrelevant to his judicial review application and it would not resolve the contentious issues in the application.

Nizar is also challenging the validity of Article 63 of the Perak State Constitution which was used to refer the matter to the Federal Court.

He said the Federal Court did not have jurisdiction to hear the Article 63 application because the term “Supreme Court” in Article 63 did not refer to the apex court in the Federation of Malay States because the apex court at that time was the Privy Council.

Nizar said he did not dispute the prerogative of the Sultan of Perak which was enshrined in Article 16(2) and/or Article 36(2). He said, the Sultan of Perak’s prerogative did not arise at all in his judicial review application.

Zambry filed the application to refer three legal questions regarding the interpretation of Article 16(2) and 16(6) according to Article 63 of the Perak State Constitution.

In his notice of motion, Zambry said that if the Federal Court decided in his favour regarding the three questions, the court should declare that on Feb 6, 2009, he had been properly appointed as Perak Mentri Besar.

The Federal Court has fixed Tuesday to hear the notice of motion application.

Nizar filed the judicial review application at the High Court to challenge Zambry's appointment as the legitimate mentri besar.

Nizar argued that according to the Perak State Constitution, he was the legitimate mentri besar because he had advised the Sultan to dissolve the State Legislative Assembly, did not resign and no motion of no confidence had been passed against him in the Assembly.

The High Court will hear the judicial review application on May 5 and 6

Nizar: Let court decide on Camry - Malaysiakini

Andrew Ong | Apr 23, 09 5:19pm

Ousted Perak Menteri Besar Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin has no plans to buy the official menteri besar car despite offers from the current Barisan Nasional state government.

"I'm driving it, I'm not buying it," an annoyed-looking Nizar told reporters last night at a public forum in Kuala Lumpur.

"We will wait for the court decision. There must be a (court order) to take it back," said Nizar, adding that as of now, the vehicle was still the "rakyat's car".

Yesterday, several newspapers reported that BN's Perak Menteri Besar Zambry Abd Kadir would give priority to Nizar during the auction of 16 Toyota Camry's used as official vehicles the latter's administration.

Nizar is the sole Pakatan Rakyat state representative that has refused to surrender the Camry official car over to the new state government because the Kuala Lumpur High Court has yet to decide on a suit on the legitimate menteri besar.

The matter has been fast-tracked to the Federal Court on Zambry's request and will be heard next Tuesday.

Nizar's administration had bought the 16 Camry vehicles on grounds that the imported cars cost less to maintain than the old fleet of Proton V6 Perdana.

Nizar's Camry still bears the Perak menteri besar plate, AGS 10, and was used to ferry him from Ipoh to the public forum in the Selangor Chinese Assembly hall last night.

More news at:

The Big "C" in Perak - A National Discourse - Rocky Bru

The Big "C" in Perak - A National Discourse

Event: The National Press Club's series of National Discourse
Theme: The Perak Crisis
Date/Time: 24 April 2009, Friday 8 pm
Venue: Ipoh Town Hall, Perak

Register on-line NOW. Mail your details to to book a seat. Limited number of seats available. Admission is free.

Shafee Abdullah, the prominent lawyer, has confirmed his participation. He will deliver a keynote address on the Perak Crisis, looking at it from his critical and professional angle.

The plan is to have a representative from the Pakatan Rakyat coalition in Perak and a representative from the Barisan Nasional government in the state to take part in the Discourse and respond immediately to points raised by Shafee.

Those in attendance will get a chance to raise their points and questions during a Q & A session. We should be able to wrap up by 10 pm or 10.30 pm latest.

The National Press Club's series of National Discourse is aimed at encouraging healthy debate on current issues. By organising these debates in the states (instead of in KL), the NPC hopes to establish rapport with the local reps and people, and touch based with the local journalists and bloggers.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Perak kembali guna Perdana; lelong 16 Camry baru membazir, kata Nizar - MStar

April 22, 2009 Oleh ZANARIAH ABD MUTALIB

PETALING JAYA: Bekas Menteri Besar Perak, Datuk Seri Ir. Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin menyifatkan tindakan kerajaan Barisan Nasional (BN) Perak untuk melelong 16 buah kereta Toyota Camry yang digunakan exco Pakatan Rakyat sebelum ini sebagai satu pembaziran wang rakyat.

Nizar berkata, kerajaan negeri yang baru itu sepatutnya menggunakan terlebih dahulu kereta tersebut dalam tempoh lima hingga enam tahun sebelum menjualnya memandangkan ia baru sahaja dibeli Januari lalu.

"Kereta itu semua masih dalam tempoh jaminan tiga tahun. Mengapa mahu melelongnya sedangkan ia masih baru dipakai?

"Pada saya, elok mereka gunakan dahulu kerana tindakan membeli kereta lain bagi menggantikan Camry itu adalah sesuatu yang membazirkan duit rakyat," katanya ketika dihubungi mStar Online, hari ini.

Semalam, kerajaan negeri Perak dikatakan akan melelong 16 buah kereta Toyota Camry 2.4 yang sebelum ini digunakan sebagai kenderaan rasmi exco Pakatan ketika menerajui pentadbiran kerajaan negeri.

Menurut kenyataan tender terbuka yang dikeluarkan pejabat Setiausaha Kerajaan Negeri yang dihantar ke bahagian iklan sebuah akhbar berbahasa Melayu di Ipoh semalam, lelongan kereta itu akan berlangsung pada 4 hingga 18 Mei ini dan kereta-kereta tersebut boleh dibeli secara pukal atau seunit dengan harga rizab RM148,000 sebuah.

Mengulas lanjut, Mohammad Nizar berkata, kesemua kereta Camry tersebut dibeli oleh pihaknya bagi menggantikan Proton Perdana V6 yang telah empat tahun digunakan oleh kerajaan BN sebelum Pakatan menerajui kerajaan Perak pada Mac tahun lalu.

"Kita pakai tidak sampai setahun tapi kos penyelenggaraan untuk sebuah kereta V6 amat tinggi sehingga ada yang mencecah RM80,000, boleh beli sebuah kereta lain pula.

"Jadi kita ambil keputusan untuk menukar kenderaan rasmi kerajaan negeri kepada Camry kerana jika diikutkan harga, harganya hanya RM96,000 sebuah berbanding V6 yang berharga RM102,000.

"Selain itu, Toyota Camry lebih tahan lasak dan kos penyelenggaraannya juga lebih murah berbanding V6," katanya.

Nizar yang juga Ahli Parlimen Bukit Gantang berkata, pembelian Camry oleh Pakatan itu juga bukanlah satu kesalahan memandangkan kerajaan BN sebelum itu yang diterajui Datuk Seri Mohammad Tajol Rosli sememangnya telah mempunyai peruntukan untuk menukar kereta rasmi kerajaan negeri.

Katanya, beliau tidak tahu sama ada BN akan membeli kenderaan rasmi yang baru atau menggunakan Perdana V6 yang lama.

Nizar berkata, jika BN mahu terus mempersoalkan pembelian Toyota Camry itu yang dikatakan tidak mengikut dasar negara yang mahukan penggunaan kereta tempatan, beliau turut mahu mempertikaikan pembelian Mercedez sebagai kereta rasmi kerajaan negeri di Terengganu dan Volvo di Sabah.

Dalam pada itu, Bernama melaporkan, kerajaan negeri Perak pimpinan BN akan membeli kereta Proton Perdana Eksekutif untuk digunakan sebagai kenderaan rasmi anggota Exco kerajaan negeri dan pegawai kanan kerajaan bagi menggantikan 16 buah kereta rasmi jenis Toyota Camry yang akan dilelong itu.

Menteri Besar Perak, Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir berkata, "kita telah pun membuat keputusan bahawa kita akan kembali semula kepada Proton kerana itu adalah kereta yang menjadi lambang kebanggaan negara dan sewajarnya kita kembali semula menggunakan kereta ini sebagai kereta rasmi.

Ketika ditemui selepas mempengerusikan mesyuarat exco kerajaan negeri di Ipoh hari ini, beliau tidak menyatakan jumlah kereta Proton Perdana Eksekutif yang akan dibeli dan sekadar menyatakan pembelian akan dibuat berdasarkan kepada keperluan kerajaan negeri.

Ditanya sama ada kerajaan negeri mempunyai kebimbangan terhadap kos penyelenggaraan kereta Proton Perdana Eksekutif yang didakwa tinggi, Zambry berkata, kerajaan negeri akan mengadakan perbincangan khas dengan syarikat Proton berhubung penyelenggaraan kereta berkenaan.

Sementara itu, Zambry berkata kerajaan negeri menerima maklum balas menggalakkan daripada pelbagai pihak yang berminat untuk mendapatkan 16 buah kereta Toyota Camry 2.4 itu.

Zambry juga mengesahkan bahawa Nizar telah menyatakan hasratnya untuk membida kereta Toyota Camry 2.4V bernombor pendaftaran AGS10 yang digunakan oleh bekas Menteri Besar itu sebelum ini.

"Walaupun ada pembida yang lebih tinggi, kita kena faham beliau adalah bekas seorang Menteri Besar. Oleh kerana dia nak pakai... dia nak beli kereta itu, kita bagi keutamaan kepada dia.

"Ini adalah beberapa hal yang kita kena ambil kira juga," katanya.

Zambry juga tidak menolak kemungkinan keutamaan serupa akan diberikan kepada mana-mana bekas exco pakatan pembangkang yang berminat untuk membeli bekas kereta rasmi masing-masing.

"Tanya mereka (bekas exco) berminat ke tidak. Biasanya kita akan bagi keutamaan, itu adalah dasar kita sebelum ini tapi walau apa pun, kita akan pergi kepada pembida yang tertinggi yang kita tahu sebelum ini harga rizabnya adalah RM148,000 sebuah," katanya.

Sivakumar expected to be replaced as Speaker on May 7 - Sun

By Kong See Hoh

IPOH (April 22, 2009) : The Perak State Assembly is expected to replace its speaker, V. Sivakumar of Pakatan Rakyat (PR), when it sits again on May 7, Nanyang Siang Pau reported today.

The report, quoting sources, said the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah, has been invited to address the assembly when it meets for the first time under Barisan Nasional after the February power grab.

It is learnt that the Barisan Nasional assemblymen will table a vote of no-confidence against Sivakumar on the first sitting.

On resumption of the meeting the following day, the assembly will elect a new Speaker to end the two-month-long constitutional crisis in the state.

Sivakumar has been regarded by the BN as the central figure in the crisis and is the only PR representative left in the state government after the power transition.

He has not only recognised the PR Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin as the rightful Mentri Besar but also banned Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir and his six exco members from the state assembly.

However, the Federal Court has ruled that Sivakumar did not have the power to suspend Zambry and the six BN exco members from attending the State Assembly.

The report said one likely candidate for the the Speaker's post is Kubu Gajah assemblyman Datuk Seri Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Omar.

Umno sources said the post was earlier offered to former Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Tajol Rosli Ghazali but he declined.

Sources also said Jelapang assemblyman Hee Yit Foong, who is now an independent after quitting DAP, and two other assemblymen, Jamaluddin Mat Radzi (Behrang) and Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering), the PKR men who have defected to Umno, will likely be appointed exco members in the BN state government once things settle down.

Hee was the former deputy speaker whereas Jamaluddin and Osman were exco men under PR.

Fed Court to interpret Perak Ruler's powers to appoint MB - NST

By : V. Anbalagan

PUTRAJAYA, Wed: April 22, 2009

The two month old Perak constitutional crisis could be over sooner than expected. Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir has filed an application in the Federal Court for an interpretation of the Sultan’s prerogative power under the Perak Constitution to appoint a menteri besar. The Federal Court has fixed the matter for hearing on Tuesday.
Zambry’s application, made under Article 63 of the State Constitution, was filed by his solicitors Zul Rafique and Partners at the Federal Court registry on Monday.

This express route is taken following the apex court’s landmark ruling on April 8 that it can decide the status of three independent assemblymen who are friendly to the Barisan Nasional.

Article 63 states that a party to a proceeding in a High Court can go direct to the Federal Court if there was a serious question of law to be determined.

(On April 9, a five-man bench unanimously declared that the three independents were still assemblymen and the Election Commission was the rightful entity to establish a casual vacancy and not the state legislative assembly Speaker.)
In his application, Zambry wants the Federal Court to clarify the position of Article 16 (2) and Article 16 (6) of the Perak Constitution.

He posed three questions:
* whether the ruler had the right to refuse consent to the dissolution of the assembly by ousted menteri besar Datuk Seri Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin when he had lost the confidence of the majority assemblymen;
* whether upon refusal by the ruler to dissolve the assembly, should Nizar and his executive councillors tender their resignations; and
* whether the ruler can appoint Zambry as menteri besar after due inquiry that Nizar had lost the confidence of the majority assemblymen although a vote of no confidence was not taken in the assembly.

If the above questions are in the affirmative, Zambry wants the court to declare that his appointment as menteri besar on Feb 6 was in accordance with Article 16 (2) of the Perak Constitution.

Zambry said his grounds for the application was premised on the basis that the apex court could now decide on the appointment and removal of menteri besar as it was allowed under the Perak Constitution.

He said the questions of general principles posed would be decided for the first time, and it was of public importance as it involved the major concerns of the people of Perak.

Nizar claimed that he was still the legitimate menteri besar on grounds that there was no dissolution of the state legislative assembly, no motion confidence was taken in the house against him and he did not resign.

He also issued a write of quo warranto asking Zambry to show cause by what authority he was occupying the post.

Nizar to get first dibs on his Camry: Dr Zambry - Star


IPOH: The Barisan Nasional-led state government will give former Perak mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin first preference in the sale of the Toyota Camry AGS 10 he used as his official car.

Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir said that this was because the Barisan government was “courteous” and “did not believe in being confrontational.”

He said that since his predecessor had expressed an interest in bidding for the car, which had been the former Pakatan Rakyat government’s official mentri besar vehicle, the state would not stop the latter from making an offer during the auction.

“It is good that he wants to buy the car. At least then he wouldn’t be using it ‘secara haram’ (illegally) any more,” Dr Zambry told reporters after chairing the weekly executive committee meeting here Wednesday.

He added that while Nizar would still have to bid for the vehicle, first preference would be given to him since he was the state’s former mentri besar.

“Even if there is a higher bidder for the car, we will give him top priority out of respect to him as the former mentri besar,” he said.

On whether priority would be given to former exco members from Pakatan, Dr Zambry said:

“I don’t know, ask them if they are interested or not. Usually, we will give them priority -- it has been our policy from the start.

“But whatever it is, we must go for the highest bidder.”

Dr Zambry said the state government would revert to using Proton Perdanas as official vehicles and would soon purchase a fleet for all state excos and ex-officios.

“The Proton cars are our national pride. We can use whatever brand of cars for personal use but as official vehicles, we should use the Proton,” he said.

On previous complaints on the high cost of maintenance for the Proton Perdanas, Dr Zambry said:

“It is one of our concerns but we will speak with Proton to see how best to maintain the cars.”

It was reported Tuesday that the state government had decided to auction off the 16 Toyota Camrys that were used as official vehicles during Pakatan’s rule.

The auction will take place at the State Secretariat’s car park from 9.30am to 4pm from May 4 to 18.

The reserve price for the vehicles will be at RM148,000 each and those interested should submit their offers before noon on May 18.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

'Between the sultan and me' - Malaysiakini

Hafiz Yatim | Apr 21, 09 2:42pm

Picture courtesy of The Star

In the latest twist to the political saga in Perak, state ruler Sultan Azlan Shah was accused of not citing any provisions under the state constitution when ordering Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin to resign as menteri besar.

This was revealed in an affidavit filed by the ousted menteri besar with the Kuala Lumpur High Court registry yesterday.

The Pakatan Rakyat leader gave a detailed account of what had transpired at the crucial meeting with the ruler on Feb 4 and 5.

Mohd Nizar also denied and questioned the version stated by Perak legal advisor Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid in his affidavit. According to him, Ahmad Kamal’s version did not constitute the whole truth.

In his affidavit to support the affidavit by Barisan Nasional’s newly installed menteri besar Zambry Abdul Kadir, Ahmad Kamal noted that the ruler had cited the constitution when ordering the ousted menteri besar to resign.

Mohd Nizar also revealed that during his 15-minute audience with the Sultan on Feb 5, he had warned the ruler of the possible consequences he could face in failing to dissolve the state assembly.

According to the affidavit, Mohd Nizar said the ordeal began on Feb 4, when he met the ruler to seek his permission to dissolve the assembly to end the deadlock following the sudden disappearance of three assemblypersons - Mohd Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering), Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) and Hee Yit Foong (Jelapang) - who had "resigned".

However, the sultan told Mohd Nizar that he would think about the request and recited a passage from the Quran "Innallaha maa Sobirin" (God is with the person who is patient).

Mohd Nizar said he respected the decision and during the meeting, he also submitted a draft for the dissolution of the assembly for the ruler’s approval.

However, the ousted menteri besar denied making any suggestion to the ruler that the assembly had lost confidence in him as the leader of the executive and for that reason, he wanted the dissolution of the assembly.

Several reasons cited

On Feb 13, Mohd Nizar filed an application for a judicial review, in challenging Zambry's appointment and sought several declarations pertaining to the interpretation of Article 16 (6) of the Perak Constitution.

In his application, Mohd Nizar claimed to be the rightful chief executive of the state on the grounds that there was no dissolution of the state legislature, no motion of no-confidence was taken in the House against him and he did not resign from the post.

He also issued a writ of quo warranto asking Zambry to show cause by what authority he was occupying the post of menteri besar.

Mohd Nizar said in his affidavit that the sultan had informed him on Feb 5 that he was not acceding to the request to dissolve the assembly.

The ousted menteri besar then requested for another 15-minute audience with the ruler and proceeded to list out several reasons as to why the assembly should be dissolved. These include:

1) He was applying for the dissolution of the assembly based on his power as the menteri besar.

2) Power should be returned to the people to choose a lawful government.

3) If the assembly was dissolved, the people would respect and improve and uplift the image of the royal institution and they would also be thankful. This will show that the sultan is just and non-partisan in letting the people to decide. This was in accordance with the concept of constitutional monarchy, and the democracy principles that the state upholds.

4) The sultan should be thankful and accept God's gift in allowing him to celebrate his silver jubilee and to return the peoples’ right to choose their own government.

5) Should the ruler not grant the dissolution, the people would blame the palace and the sultan himself.

6) Where was BN's morality in accepting Jamaluddin, Mohd Osman and Hee, with two of them facing corruption charges. What if Jamaluddin and Mohd Osman are found guilty of corruption, what would happen next? If the charges are withdrawn, the people would feel that it was based on intervention by the palace or BN.

7) If the assembly is dissolved, the royalty and the palace would be respected in the eyes of the public and international community. The question of immunity of the rulers as brought about by (former premier) Dr Mahathir Mohamad would also be negated.

8) Mohd Nizar cited a passage from Sultan Azlan Shah's book titled 'Constitutional Monarchy, the Rule of Law and Good Governance' which had been given to him by the ruler on his appointment as menteri besar. The passage stated: "Under normal circumstances, it is taken for granted that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong would not withhold his consent to a request for the dissolution of the Parliament. His role is purely formal."

9) He also reminded the ruler of what happened in countries like Indonesia, Philippines, Egypt and Iran which once had a monarchy. However, once the monarchy reneged and sided with a political party, it resulted in their downfall.

Refused to resign

Mohd Nizar said he also told the sultan that during his silver jubilee celebrations, the latter had emphasised on good governance and pleaded with the ruler to uphold it by dissolving the assembly.

He also reminded the ruler of the statutory letter signed by the 31 Pakatan elected assemblypersons in support of him being menteri besar which was ordered by the palace.

Following this, Mohd Nizar said: “The sultan slowly raised his face and said he would not order the dissolution and instead called for my resignation.”

Refusing to do so, the ousted menteri besar then replied: "Ampun Tuanku, patik pohon sembah derhaka" (Forgive me your highness, I humbly beg to disagree).

He then kissed the hand of the ruler, who left the room without uttering a word.

More news at

Toyota Camry bekas Exco Pakatan Perak dilelong - MStar

April 21, 2009

Kereta Toyota Camry 2.4 yang sebelum ini digunakan sebagai kenderaan rasmi exco pakatan pembangkang ketika menerajui pentadbiran kerajaan negeri akan dilelong oleh kerajaan negeri Perak.

IPOH: Kerajaan negeri Perak akan melelong 16 buah kereta Toyota Camry 2.4 yang sebelum ini digunakan sebagai kenderaan rasmi exco pakatan pembangkang ketika menerajui pentadbiran kerajaan negeri.

Menurut kenyataan tender terbuka yang dihantar ke bahagian iklan sebuah akhbar berbahasa Melayu di sini hari ini, lelongan kereta itu akan berlangsung di tempat letak kereta Bangunan Perak Darul Ridzuan di sini mulai 9.30 pagi hingga 4 petang pada 4 hingga 18 Mei ini.

Kenyataan tender yang dikeluarkan pejabat Setiausaha Kerajaan Negeri Perak itu menyatakan kenderaan berkenaan boleh dibeli secara pukal atau seunit dengan harga rizab RM148,000 sebuah.

Kereta itu adalah yang menggunakan nombor pendaftaran AGS10, AFD11, AFD22, AFD33, AFD55, AFD66, AFD77, AFD88, AFD99, AFD333, AFD999, AFF33, AFF88, AFF99, AGS828 dan AEU606 yang kesemuanya didaftarkan pada 9 Jan tahun ini.

Kenyataan tender itu turut menyebut, semua kenderaan itu adalah baru yang digunakan antara satu hingga dua bulan, perbatuan rendah dan masih dalam tempoh jaminan tiga tahun oleh syarikat pengeluar.

Selain itu ia turut menyebut kenderaan berkenaan juga mempunyai nombor pendaftaran orang kenamaan, cermin 'tinted' yang bernilai RM2,000 serta bebas daripada sebarang kejadian kemalangan.

Bagaimanapun, difahamkan kereta rasmi yang bernombor pendaftaran AGS10 yang digunakan oleh bekas Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin tidak akan dilelong kerana beliau dikatakan telah membuat tempahan membeli kereta tersebut.

Dokumen tender boleh didapati pada waktu pejabat mulai 4 Mei hingga 18 Mei ini di Pejabat Setiausaha Kerajaan Negeri Perak, Bahagian Pengurusan, Aras 3, Bangunan Perak Darul Ridzuan dengan harga RM20 senaskah.

Mereka yang ingin membeli kenderaan berkenaan perlu menghantar kembali surat tawaran tender itu sebelum pukul 12 tengah hari pada 18 Mei ini. BERNAMA

Zambry perolehi perintah yang tidak laku - Harakah

By Mohamed Hanipa Maidin

Pembaca ruangan ini masih bertanya kepada saya adakah dua perintah perisytiharan yang dikeluarkan Mahkamah Persekutuan pada 15 April lalu bahawa penggantungan Zambry dan enam exconya oleh Speaker Perak dibatalkan membolehkan mereka menghadiri sidang DUN Perak nanti.

awapan saya adalah tidak! Berikut adalah alasan-alasan saya.

a. Apa yang diperolehi oleh Zambry dan enam exconya hanyalah perintah deklarasi (perisytiharan) semata-mata. Tidak lebih dari itu. Di dalam undang-undang perintah deklarasi yang diperolehi oleh Zambry dan enam exconya tidak membawa apa-apa makna kerana perintah deklarasi tidak mempunyai kuasa pemaksaan (coercive force).

Pakar undang-undang Pentadbiran, Prof M.P Jain secara jelas menyatakan:

"A declaration merely declares what the legal rights of the concerned parties are. A declaratory order has no coercive force as such nor does it quash any decision which may have been taken by an administrative authority."

(Perintah deklarasi hanya sekadar satu perisytiharan hak pihak-pihak yang terbabit dari segi perundangan. Perintah deklarasi tidak mempunyai kuasa pemaksaan (memaksa seseorang mengikut perintah tersebut). Perintah tersebut juga tidak memadam, membatalkan atau mengenepikan sebarang keputusan yang dibuat oleh mana-mana pihak berkuasa pentadbiran.)

b. Memandangkan Zambry dan enam exconya hanya memperolehi perintah deklarasi, perintah tersebut tidak meletakkan sebarang tanggung jawab (impose an obligation) ke atas Sivakumar untuk mematuhinya kerana dari segi rekod di dalam DUN di Perak, perintah penggantungan tersebut masih wujud selagi tidak dipadam oleh Mahkamah (not quashed by the court).

Untuk memudahkan kefahaman umum, saya berikan contoh berikut:

Kita ambil satu kes misalnya seorang menyaman Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (JPN) kerana mengekalkan nama di dalam kad pengenalannya sebagai Ali bin Abu sedangkan beliau mendakwa telah menukar agama dan memohon namanya ditukar kepada John Abraham.

Katakan beliau meminta satu perintah deklarasi bahawa tindakan atau keputusan JPN yang tidak menukar namanya kepada John Abraham adalah tidak sah.

Katakan Mahkamah bersetuju dengan beliau dan mengisytiharkan bahawa keputusan atau tindakan JPN adalah tidak sah dan Mahkamah juga mengisytiharkan nama beliau adalah John Abraham. Maka persoalan yang timbul adalah, adakah JPN wajib menukar namanya kepada John Abraham selepas beliau mendapat perintah perisytiharan tersebut?

Dari segi undang-undang, JPN tidak wajib menukar namanya kepada John Abraham kerana Mahkamah hanya mengisytiharkan tindakan JPN adalah tidak sah tanpa memerintahkan nama Ali bin Abu dipadam dan ditukar kepada John Abraham.

JPN hanya wajib menukar nama Ali bin Abu kepada John Abraham jika pemohon mendapat perintah 'certiorari' iaitu perintah mengenepikan/memadam (quash) keputusan JPN tersebut dan selanjutnya perintah mandamus iaitu perintah mengarahkan JPN menukar nama beliau dari Ali bin Abu kepada John Abraham.

Selagi tidak ada perintah 'certiorari' dan perintah mandamus tersebut maka nama beliau akan kekal di dalam kad pengenalan sebagai Ali bin Abu meskipun Mahkamah mengisytiharkan namanya John Abraham.

c. Dalam konteks kes Zambry lwn Sivakumar apa yang sepatutnya peguam Umno buat adalah selain mendapatkan perintah perisytiharan (deklarasi) bahawa penggantungannya tidak sah, Zambry juga sepatutnya memohon Mahkamah mendapatkan perintah-perintah berikut iaitu perintah 'certiorari' iaitu perintah mengenepikan atau memadam keputusan Sivakumar yang menggantung beliau dan enam exconya, dan juga perintah mandamus iaitu perintah meminta Sivakumar menbenarkan beliau dan enam exconya hadir ke dalam sidang DUN Perak.

d. Tanpa perintah 'certiorari' dan mandamus tersebut maka perintah perisytiharan yang Zambry dan enam exconya perolehi dari Mahkamah adalah satu perintah yang tidak membawa apa-apa kesan ke atas Sivakumar. Berhadapan dengan perintah seperti itu Sivakumar dengan tenang akan menjawab begini: "So what!"

Mungkin pembaca ingin bertanya mengapa Zambry dan enam exconya tidak memohon perintah 'certiorari' dan mandamus sebaliknya hanya memohon perintah perisytiharan sahaja.

Ada dua sebab mengapa mereka tidak berbuat demikian.

Sebab Pertama adalah peguam Zambry sendiri secara jelas mengakui semasa penghujahan di Mahkamah Persekutuan bahawa Zambry tidak boleh memohon perintah 'certiorari' dan mandamus kerana kedua-dua perintah tersebut tidak boleh dipohon di dalam kes ini disebabkan doktrin pengasingan kuasa (separation of powers).

Dengan lain perkataan peguam Zambry mengakui bahawa berdasarkan doktrin pengasingan kuasa, Mahkamah tidak boleh memerintah Sivakumar sebagai Speaker untuk sama ada memadamkan keputusannya atau membenarkan Zambry masuk dan hadir di dalam persidangan DUN Perak.

Hatta jika kita lihat kepada 10 perintah yang Zambry pohon kesemuanya adalah perintah berbentuk perisytiharan sahaja. Malahan Mahkamah juga tidak membenarkan perintah perisytiharan supaya beliau dan enam exconya untuk masuk, menghadiri dan mengambil bahagian di dalam sidang DUN Perak.

Sebab kedua adalah Zambry dan enam exconya telah tersalah memilih prosedur Mahkamah. Jika beliau ingin memohon perintah 'certiorari' dan mandamus, beliau perlu membuat permohonan semakan kehakiman di bawah Aturan 53 Kaedah-Kaedah Mahkamah Tinggi 1980 dan bukannya melalui Saman Pemula seperti yang mereka buat.

Memandangkan mereka telah tersalah prosedur maka mereka dengan berat hati terpaksa berpuas hati dengan perintah perisytiharan yang tidak membawa apa-apa makna.

Atas dasar itu juga peguam Sivakumar juga telah berhujah bahawa perintah perisytiharan yang Zambry pohon sebenarnya tidak membawa apa-apa faedah dan meminta Mahkamah tidak melayan perintah-perintah yang dipohon oleh Zambry tersebut.

Hujah peguam Sivakumar adalah berasaskan apa yang dinyatakan di dalam kes Fan Yew Teng vs Government of Malaysia di mana Mahkamah telah menerima pakai apa yang dinyatakan oleh Erskine May di dalam buku Parlimentary Procedure (17th Edition) di mana penulis telah menyatakan:

"The decisions of the court are not accepted as binding the house in matters of privilege, nor the decision of the House by the courts."

(Keputusan Mahakamh tidak diterima sebagai mengikat Parlimen atau DUN di dalam perkara menyentuh keistimewaan, begitu juga keputusan Parlimen atau DUN tidak mengikat Mahkamah.)

Mengapa? Mungkin pembaca bertanya mengapa Mahkamah membenarkan juga perintah yang tidak berfaedah tersebut? Jawapan mudah saya adalah ia hanyalah perintah untuk mengambil hati Umno. Perumpamaan yang mudah, ia adalah ibarat hadiah saguhati kerana menyertai pertandingan.

Jenis Umno ini, kita beri mereka wang satu sen pun mereka melonjak gembira sedangkan satu sen boleh beli apa?

Seperkara lagi yang saya perlu kongsi di sini adalah mengenai sidang DUN di bawah pokok yang diadakan pada 3 Mac 2009. Isu keabsahan (validity) persidangan di bawah pokok tersebut juga merupakan salah satu isu yang dirujuk oleh Zambry ke Mahkamah Persekutuan di bawah Perkara 63 Perlembagaan Negeri Perak.

Isu yang dirujuk adalah sama ada sidang bawah pokok pada 3 Mac 2009 adalah sah apabila ianya dibuat tanpa perkenan Sultan Perak.

Selepas mendengar hujah peguam Zambry dan peguam Sivakumar, Mahkamah Persekutuan memutuskan untuk tidak membuat apa-apa keputusan terhadap isu keabsahan sidang DUN di bawah pokok pada 3 Mac 2009 tersebut. Secara tersirat kita boleh menyimpulkan bahawa Mahkamah bersetuju bahawa sidang DUN di bawah pokok adalah sah.

Memandangkan tiada perintah Mahkamah yang membatalkan keputusan sidang bawah pokok, Umno terpaksa menerima hakikat berikut:

a. Persidangan DUN di bawah pokok telah mengesahkan (endorsed) keputusan Sivakumar yang menggantung Zambry dan enam exconya selama 18 bulan dan 12 bulan.

b. Dengan pengesahan tersebut maka keputusan penggantungan tersebut adalah sah dan masih mengikat Zambry dan enam exconya yang lain.

c. Di dalam samannya Zambry mengatakan keputusan Sivakumar adalah tidak sah kerana keputusannya tidak disahkan oleh DUN Perak. Memandangkan sidang DUN Perak pada 3 Mac 2009 telah mengesahkan keputusan Sivakumar yang dibuat pada 18 Februari 2009 dan memandangkan Mahkamah Persekutuan tidak membuat apa�apa keputusan yang mengisytiharkan sidang bawah pokok adalah tidak sah, maka keputusan DUN Perak di bawah pokok adalah sah dan mengikat Zambry serta enam exconya.

d. Apa yang Mahkamah putuskan hanya melibatkan keputusan Sivakumar pada 18 Februari dan bukannya keputusan DUN Perak pada 3 Mac 2009.

Kesimpulannya Umno hanya dapat perintah Mahkamah yang tidak membawa apa-apa faedah.

Nota: Hanipa Maidin ialah Pengerusi Lajnah Undang-undang dan Hak Asasi Manusia PAS Pusat dan ahli panel penasihat undang-undang, Menteri Besar Perak, Dato' Seri Ir Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin

Forum: “Krisis BerPerlembagaan Perak”, 25 April 2009

April 20, 2009

Majlis Peguam akan menganjurkan satu forum berkenaan krisis berPerlembagaan Perak pada 25 April 2009 pukul 12.00 - 2.00 petang di Auditorium Majlis Peguam.

Tajuknya Perak Crisis: Constitutional, Legal or Political?

Ahli-ahli panel forum ini yang telah dijemput adalah saudara-saudara Dr Subramaniam Pillai, Tommy Thomas dan Dato’ Shafee Abdullah.

More details at:

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Pakatan to fight BN all the way for Perak - Malaysian Insider

By Baradan Kuppusamy

KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 — The move to suspend Perak state assembly secretary Abdullah Antong Sabri today is a signal that neither the Speaker V. Sivakumar nor the Pakatan Rakyat is going to concede control of the legislature to the Barisan Nasional without a fight.

The issue was debated long and hard by top PR leaders in Penang today and the decision is to fight BN every inch of the way.

A number of PR leaders feel that since they consider the upcoming assembly “illegal,” their attendance may legitimise it.

But after heated debate the decision was taken to attend the assembly or otherwise it was felt BN would have a free hand to do what it liked.

A senior PR leader who attended the three-hour meeting said they would fight BN every step of the way.

“We have Plans A, B and C,” the leader said, promising a “climatic” outcome to the May 7 face-off between PR and BN.

The suspension of Abdullah by Sivakumar today is the first move by PR in what has become a game of wits.

Sivakumar first suspended Abdullah on March 3 for failing to take his instruction and he suspended him again today for sending out notices to all representatives for the assembly to convene on May 7.

“I am the Speaker and I am acting in accordance with all the rules and regulations of the Perak constitution,” Sivakumar said when contacted.

He declined further comment, citing possible legal complications.

Earlier, he told reporters in Ipoh that he had appointed Mohd Misbahul Munir Marduki as secretary of the state assembly.

He said the “purported sitting” on May 7 should not proceed pending further clarification.

Meanwhile, Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran said Sivakumar was neither informed nor consulted on the May 7 sitting.

“This act of calling an assembly sitting over the head of the Speaker is not only blatant but a direct usurpation of the powers of the Speaker by the mentri besar,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

“This is a coup… no less. This is against democracy,” he said.

He also said the courts had no business ruling on issues involving the legislature as the constitution clearly bars any interference by the judiciary.

“We are surprise and shocked by recent court decisions,” he said.

On Thursday, the Federal Court lifted Sivakumar's suspension of the MB and his six executive councillors from the state legislature.

The ruling has sparked controversy because it appears to ignore the principle of separation of powers and constitutional provisions which say proceedings of the legislature cannot be questioned in a court of law.

Although Sivakumar has suspended Abdullah and appointed another secretary who is presumably favourable to him, it remains unclear if the suspension will stop BN from convening the assembly sitting.

It is learned that the first matter on the agenda is the removal of Sivakumar as Speaker because being hostile to the BN, he can — theoretically — use the powers of his office to ruin any moves by BN to claim legitimacy in its power grab.

When the assembly first convened after the March 8 general election last year the first matter in the order of business was the election of a Speaker.

That part of the assembly was chaired by Abdullah and Sivakumar was elected Speaker.

Sources said that since the first matter is the election of a new Speaker, either Abdullah or even the Deputy Speaker, the former DAP assemblywoman Hee Yit Fong, could chair proceedings.

They said a separate lawsuit to determine whether BN's Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir or PR's Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin is the legitimate MB could be brought forward to the end of this month.

If the court holds that Zambry is the lawful mentri besar, it would remove the final legal hurdle for BN.

'Democracy tree' gets 19 companions - Malaysiakini

Apr 18, 09 5:55pm

One of the fastest growing tourist attractions in Perak, the “Democracy Tree”, has been given a makeover of sorts by the Ipoh City Council (MBI), who planted 19 smaller plants around it.

The 19 plants were put in place early this morning by MBI staff right under the large branches of the now famous rain tree in Medan Istana, a stone’s throw away from the Perak state secretariat building.

The species of the saplings have yet to be determined and it is uncertain how MBI expects the plants to survive under the shade of the rain tree.

The rain tree was dubbed the “Democracy Tree” as it was the venue for the historic and controversial March 3 emergency sitting of the state assembly.

Ipoh Barat MP, M Kulasegaran, said that the planting of the shrubs appears to be an attempt by the authorities to thwart Pakatan Rakyat’s plans to erect a memorial under the tree to commemorate the emergency sitting.

“It was announced yesterday that a new plaque would be erected at the very place where the young trees have been planted. The trees were planted to prevent this.

“Come what may, we will proceed with the erection of the people’s plaque on May 1,” wrote Kulasegaran in his blog, Kula’s Voize.

More news at

Sivakumar suspends assembly secretary, again - Star

April 18, 2009 By CHRISTINA KOH

IPOH: Perak Assembly Speaker V. Sivakumar has again suspended State Assembly secretary Abdullah Antong Sabri, this time for issuing notices to convene the sitting on May 7 without his knowledge or consent.

Last month, Sivakumar suspended Abdullah for failing to act impartially over the calling of an emergency sitting on March 3.

Sivakumar said the notices signed by Abdullah were sent to the assemblymen on Friday.

He said that despite the previous suspension, Abdullah still signed and issued the notices.

“Don’t you think its necessary to consult the Speaker first? Who is the head of the House? It is embarrassing because I was the last person to know.

“He didn’t consult me at all and as far as I know, I did not hear anything from the palace,” he told a press conference at his office in the state assembly here Saturday.

Saying he would seek an audience with the palace to clarify the matter, Sivakumar believed it was another ploy to belittle and insult the state assembly.

Asked if he would agree to the sitting if the palace had been consulted, Sivakumar said: ”Of course I have to. If everything is in order, I will act accordingly. But until then I have to clarify. I don’t see any evidence.”

To a question, Sivakumar said even if someone from the Mentri Besar’s office had obtained permission, the protocol would have been to inform the Speaker first.

Sivakumar had again named Mohd Misbahul Munir Masduki, former mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin’s political secretary, as Abdullah’s replacement.

Assembly regulations require it to be convened within six months of the last session. The last day for that would have been May 13.

In a related development, state executive councillor Datuk Hamidah Osman believed that someone was pressuring” Sivakumar to sack Abdullah.

She claimed that the two men had a cordial meeting after the notices were issued and Sivakumar seemed cooperative about the May 7 sitting.

However, State Secretary Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Hashim said that Sivakumar had no authority to suspend Abdullah.

Dr Abdul Rahman said the Sivakumar’s post was only that of an “administrative and diplomatic officer” with a M52 grade.

“Under the procedure, only the present government of the day has the authority to suspend the (assembly) secretary,” he said when contacted.

Dr Abdul Rahman said this meant only certain personnel, such as the mentri besar, and himself acting on behalf of the state government, could suspend Abdullah Antong.

He stressed that because Sivakumar did not have the authority, his earlier suspension of Abdullah Antong was, therefore, illegal and could not be enforced.

He added that the decision on who would fill the post of assembly secretary required the approval of the Public Services Department.

Earlier Saturday, Sivakumar had announced the suspension of Abdullah Antong before appointing, as his replacement, former mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin's political secretary Mohd Misbahul Munir Masduki.

Meanwhile, various quarters condemned Sivakumar’s action as being disrespectful to Sultan of Perak Sultan Azlan Shah.

Ipoh Barat division chief Datuk Shamsuddin Abdul Ghaffar expressed disappointment at the Speaker, adding that such a move would only confuse the people.

Perak Malay Chamber of Commerce vice-president Datuk Mohd Raduan Mohd Kasim pointed out that the Sultan of Perak clearly had the power to convene the assembly.

Mohd Raduan also lashed out at Nizar for reportedly rejecting the recent decision of the Federal Court to declare as illegal the barring of Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Zambry Abd Kadir and six exco members from assembly sittings.

Nizar’s statement, he said, represented a contempt of court and a disrespect for the sanctity of the law.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Perak state assembly sitting called for May 7 - Malaysian Insider

By Lee Wei Lian

KUALA LUMPUR, April 17 — The Barisan Nasional today moved closer to consolidating its control over Perak when it called for a sitting of the state assembly on May 7, just six days before a six-month deadline to do so expires.

According to Perak DAP secretary Nga Kor Ming, the clerk of the House, Abdullah Antong Sabri, issued the notice of the sitting to the Perak DAP office today.

Nga said the notice was sent without the knowledge and consent of the speaker, V. Sivakumar.

If the sitting is held, BN can rectify the flaw in its plan to take over the state by calling for a vote of confidence in its administration and in Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir.

Such a motion is almost certain to succeed as while BN and the Pakatan Rakyat have the same number of state legislators in the House, the former has the support of three independents who switched camps in February.

The Sultan of Perak had sworn in Zambry as the new mentri besar on Feb 6 but it was done without a confidence vote in the state assembly to show that he enjoys the confidence of the majority of Perak lawmakers.

The absence of a confidence vote in the House is a point used by critics of the power grab to say that the BN state government lacks legitimacy.

It also gave rise to the question of whether Zambry or Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin is the rightful mentri besar, a matter that is still pending in the Kuala Lumpur High Court with a decision expected on May 5.

Nga has criticised the May 7 date, saying that by calling a sitting so close to the court decision, it arouses suspicion that the courts are under the influence of the BN.

"Is the BN so confident of winning the case that they are calling for a sitting right after the High Court's decision?" asked Nga, saying that he sees it as a sign of disrespect for the judiciary.

He also said that the BN was practising double standards as it had earlier accused the PR of subjudice when the speaker suspended Zambry and his six executive councillors from the House while the court case over the legality of their appointments was still pending.

"I call on the BN to be accountable and explain whether or not they are the unseen hand behind the judiciary. Otherwise, the independence of the judiciary is at stake."

When contacted, DAP strongman Lim Kit Siang raised concerns over yesterday's Federal Court decision to overturn the suspension of Zambry and his executive councillors from the House by the speaker.

"The decision undermined the doctrine of separation of powers between the judiciary and the legislature and brings the whole system of parliamentary democracy based on doctrine of separation of powers into disrepute," says Lim.

If the suspension was upheld, the BN would find itself at a numerically inferior position in the House even if the assembly was convened.

BN has no choice but to call for a sitting before May 13, which is when the six-month deadline to convene the assembly expires. Otherwise, the state assembly will be automatically dissolved and a state election will be held, something that it will want to avoid given the recent by-election loss it suffered in the Perak parliamentary constituency of Bukit Gantang.

It also has to notify state lawmakers at least two weeks in advance of any sitting.

Nga says that the PR will meet and discuss the next course of action.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

When justice is not administered according to law — N.H. Chan - Malaysian Insider

APRIL 16 — The story unfolds with the application of three turncoat members of the Perak Legislative Assembly for a declaration that Speaker V. Sivakumar’s order, which was made in the Legislative Assembly, that their seats in the Assembly have become vacant because they have resigned was illegal. Here is the report from theSun newspaper, Thursday, April 2, 2009:

IPOH: The High Court yesterday dismissed the application by Perak State Assembly Speaker V. Sivakumar to strike out an original summons brought by the three independent assemblymen, seeking a declaration that Sivakumar’s order to declare their assembly seats vacant was illegal.

Justice Datuk Balia Yusuf Wahi set April 8 to hear the suit by the assemblymen Mohd Osman Mohd Jailu (Changkat Jering), Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) and Hee Yit Foong (Jelapang) against the speaker.

He also dismissed an application by three former Pakatan Rakyat state executive councillors … and three registered voters to intervene in the case, ruling that they are not interested parties as claimed.

Sivakumar had declared the three state seats vacant based on their pre-dated resignation letters as the three assemblymen were formerly from the ruling coalition. Their resignation from their parties caused the balance of power to shift to Barisan Nasional.

Sivakumar had informed the Election Commission (EC) to call for fresh elections for these three seats but the EC declined and said the seats were not vacant.

The three assemblymen then referred their suit to the High Court here for a ruling that they had not vacated their seats as declared by Sivakumar.

I don’t have to tell you how to judge the judge. You must know by now how to do it if you have read my articles in the Internet. You will know he is a bad judge if he behaves unfairly to one side as against the other. It is your perception as a member of the public that matters and not what the judge thinks of himself. A judge who does not appear to be fair is useless to the judicial process. As such he is a bad judge and is therefore unfit to sit on the bench. The other essential qualification of a judge is to administer justice according to law. That said, we can now judge this judge.

Article 72, Clause (1) of the Federal Constitution clearly states:

72. (1) The validity of any proceedings in the Legislative Assembly of any State shall not be questioned in any court.

Yet Mr Justice Balia Yusuf Wahi, who knew that the Speaker’s order which was made in the Legislative Assembly was a proceeding in the Legislative Assembly, dismissed the Speaker’s application to strike out the summons of the three turncoat assemblymen who were asking the court to question the validity of what the Speaker had done in the Assembly. As you know what the Speaker did in the Assembly, rightly or wrongly, is not to be questioned in any court. Isn’t what the judge had done by dismissing the Speaker’s application to strike out the turncoats’ summons, not administering justice according to law? The judge had gone against the Constitution of Malaysia which is the supreme law of the land. What do you call a judge who has defied the law of the land? A renegade judge?

There is another thing. Why did the judge dismiss the application of the three voters from the Behrang, Changkat Jering and Jelapang constituencies, who claimed that their rights were affected because they had voted for the DAP and PKR? They were not allowed to intervene because they were not interested parties ruled the judge. Why are they not interested parties? The voters have voted for them as their representatives in the Legislative Assembly because they were DAP and PKR candidates. Now the turncoats have reneged on the arrangement on which they have stood for election on a DAP or PKR ticket. Such an arrangement has formed the basis of an underlying assumption on which they have conducted the dealings between them. Therefore, they would not be allowed to go back on that assumption when it would be unfair or unjust to allow them to do so. In other words, it would be unfair or unjust to allow them to say that they are no longer DAP or PKR members but are independent members of the Assembly. The authority for what I have just said is so well known that I am surprised the judge had chosen to ignore it. The case is Boustead Trading (1985) Sdn Bhd v. Arab-Malaysian Merchant Bank Bhd [1995] 3 M.LJ. 331, F.C., where Gopal Sri Ram JCA sitting in the Federal Court gave the judgment of the Court. He said, p. 344:

The time has come for this court to recognize that the doctrine of estoppel is a flexible principle by which justice is done according to the circumstances of the case. It is a doctrine of wide utility and has been resorted to in varying fact patterns to achieve justice. Indeed, the circumstances in which the doctrine may operate are endless.

And at p. 345, he went on to say:

The width of the doctrine has been summed up by Lord Denning in the Amalgamated Investment case ([1982] 1 Q.B. 84 at p. 122; [1981] 3 All E.R. 577 at p. 584; [1981] 3 W.L.R. 565 at p. 575) as follows:

“The doctrine of estoppel is one of the most flexible and useful in the armoury of the law. But it has become overloaded with cases. That is why I have not gone through them all in this judgment. It has evolved during the last 150 years in a sequence of separate developments: proprietary estoppel, estoppel by representation of fact, estoppel by acquiescence, and promissory estoppel. At the same time it has been sought to be limited by a series of maxims: estoppel is only a rule of evidence, estoppel cannot give rise to a cause of action, estoppel cannot do away with the need for consideration, and so forth. All these can now be seen to merge into one general principle shorn of limitations. When the parties to a transaction proceed on the basis of an underlying assumption — either of fact or of law — whether due to misrepresentation or mistake makes no difference - on which they have conducted the dealings between them - nether of them will be allowed to go back on that assumption when it would be unfair or unjust to allow him to do so. If one of them does seek to go back on it, the courts will give the other such remedy as the equity of the case demands.” (Emphasis added)

So the judge Balia Yusuf Wahi had wrongly ruled that the three voters were not interested parties. The voters’ interest in the matter is that they have a right to insist on the persons whom they have voted to be their elected DAP or PKR representatives not to change sides by switching to the other political coalition Barisan Nasional. “When the parties to a transaction proceed on the basis of an underlying assumption on which they have conducted the dealings between them neither of them will be allowed to go back on that assumption when it would be unfair or unjust to allow him to do so. If one of them does seek to go back on it, the courts will give the other such remedy as the equity of the case demands.”

We know that the judge had adjourned the hearing of the suit by the turncoat assemblymen to April 8. But to our amazement we were told by the newspaper that the turncoats have also made two applications to the Federal Court on Friday, that was Friday, April 3, for two declarations, viz:

Whether, on a true interpretation of article 36(5) of the Laws of Perak Darul Ridzuan (Perak Constitution) read together with section 12(3) of the Election Act 1958, the Election Commission is the rightful entity which establishes if there is a casual vacancy of the state legislative assembly seat.

When a resignation of a member of the Perak state legislative assembly is disputed, is such resignation within the meaning as ascribed under article 35 of the Perak Constitution.

If they have applied to the Federal Court for a determination, then it is only proper to inform the High Court and the other side about it. So that what is pending in the High Court could be adjourned until the Federal Court has decided on the questions that have been referred to it.

Then on Friday, April 10, the New Straits Times carries this report:

PUTRAJAYA: The Federal Court has declared that three assemblymen who quit their parties are still members of the Perak state legislature. This follows an unanimous ruling by a five-men bench yesterday which ruled that the Election Commission had the authority to declare a seat vacant.

“The Election Commission is the rightful entity to establish if there was a casual vacancy in the Perak state legislature,” said Federal Court judge Tan Sri Alauddin Mohd Sheriff. Sitting with him were Datuk Arifin Zakaria, Datuk Nik Hashim Nik Abdul Rahman, Datuk Sen S Augustine Paul and Datuk James Foong.

Last month, Parti Keadilan Rakyat’s Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang) and Mohd Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering), together with DAP’s Hew Yit Foong (Jelapang), filed an urgent application for the Federal Court to decide their matter. The three wanted a declaration whether it was the Election Commission or the Perak Speaker (V Sivakumar) had the final say in determining a vacancy.

In February, Sivakumar, using resignation letters signed by the three, had declared the seats vacant. He informed the Election Commission, but the commission refused to hold by-elections on the ground that there was ambiguity over whether the assemblymen had resigned voluntarily.

Was the Federal Court right? Before you can judge the judges of the highest court in the country, it is necessary for me to appraise you of the law applicable which is found in the Constitution of Perak. Thus, the heading of Article XXXI of the Perak Constitution reads:

Disqualification for membership of Legislative Assembly

XXXI. (1) Subject to the provisions of this Article, a person is disqualified for being a member of the Legislative Assembly if-

(a) [he is of unsound mind]; (I have summarised the paragraph)

(b) he is an undischarged bankrupt;

(c) he holds office of profit;

(d) [he has failed to lodge any return of election expenses within time]; (I have summarised the paragraph)

(e) [he has been convicted of an offence and sentenced to imprisonment of not less than one year or to a fine of not less than RM2,000]; (I have summarised the paragraph)

(f) [disqualification involving election offences]; (I have summarised the paragraph)

(g) [he has acquired the citizenship of another country] (I have summarised the paragraph)

(2) [The disqualification of a person under paragraphs (d) or (e) above may be removed by the Sultan or ceased at the end of five years] (This is a summary)

(3) …

(4) …

(5) A person who resigns his membership of the Legislative Assembly of this State or any other State shall, for a period of five years beginning with the date on which his resignation takes effect, be disqualified from being a member of the Legislative Assembly of this State.

So that it is clear to all of us that Article XXXI, Clause (5) says that an assemblyman who resigns is disqualified from being a member of the Assembly for a period of five years from the date of his resignation.

And Article XXXIII, Clause (1) says:

XXXIII. (1) If any question arises whether a member of the Legislative Assembly has become disqualified for membership, the decision of the Assembly shall be taken and shall be final.

This means that whether a person is disqualified for membership of the Assembly is the decision of the Assembly. So that when a person has resigned he is disqualified from being a member of the Assembly for five years from the date his resignation takes effect.

You may want to know how an assemblyman can resign. Article XXXV states:

XXXV. A member of the Legislative Assembly may resign his membership by writing under his hand addressed to the Speaker.

So that a member can resign simply by writing to the Speaker. But whether the letter itself amounts to a resignation, as a resignation would disqualify him for membership of the Assembly, is for the Assembly to decide. Article XXXIII, Clause (1) says that the decision of the Assembly shall be taken on the disqualification if any question arises on it, which in the present context is the effectiveness of the letter of resignation. And the decision of the Assembly is to be final.

The above is simple enough for all of us to understand. But then, all of us are wondering how on earth the Federal Court could have decided that “(t)he Election Commission is the rightful entity to establish if there was a casual vacancy in the Perak state legislature”? Don’t you all feel superior to the judges of the Federal Court because you know the correct answer whilst the highest court gave a wrong decision. So you see, when you know how to judge the judges you would be able to separate the wheat from the chaff from among our judges. The chaff, you will discover, may not be up to your expectations.

What really happened was that with their myopic reading of the Perak Constitution they pick on Clause (5) of Article XXXVI and say that is the correct answer. This is what Article XXXVI, Clause (5) says — the article starts with the heading:

Summoning, prorogation and dissolution of Legislative Assembly

XXXVI. (5) A casual vacancy shall be filled within sixty days from the date on which it is established by the Election Commission that there is a vacancy.

A casual vacancy means an occasional vacancy which can be filled simply with a by-election. But the question whether the turncoat assemblyman have resigned or not will have to await the outcome of the decision of the Assembly which decision shall be final: see Article XXXIII, Clause (1). It is only upon receiving the decision of the Legislative Assembly will the Election Commission be able to establish that there is a vacancy. As it turns out the Federal Court has put the cart before the horse - in this case, just the cart without the horse - which is that the court has held that it is for the Commission to establish that there is a casual vacancy without waiting for the decision of the Assembly whether the three turncoat assemblymen have been disqualified for membership of the Assembly by resignation. —

Justice N.H. Chan was a former Court of Appeal judge.