16 March, 2008

A tale of two MB

Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim has insisted he had been given the mandate by Barisan Nasional chairman and Umno president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to continue becoming the Perlis Mentri Besar.
Shahidan claimed the "letter of mandate" given to him by the prime minister requested the Raja of Perlis to appoint him to lead the state.

"I have the letter but if Tuanku does not want to appoint me because the Ruler has confidence in other people and there are laws allowing him to do so, well, that is his prerogative and right. I have 120 days and who ever is sworn in apart from me, he can be regarded as going against the PM's order and an opposition. We will see what to do next as it is the people who has chosen the BN to lead the state, not individual.

"BN wins in Perlis, so BN will lead the state. And if that person accepts to be sworn in, that means he does not support me and also the prime minister. He is an opposition." (The New Straits Times)

Jelebu MP Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim said Raja Perlis Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Syed Putra Jamalullail has the power to appoint Bintong state assemblyman Dr Md Isa Sabu as the new Perlis Menteri Besar.

He said it is one of the three major powers of the state rulers.

Rais Yatim further urged Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim to accept and comply with Raja's decisions. (Sin Chew Daily)

Meanwhile, The new Menteri Besar of Perak will be sworn in at Istana Iskandariah in the royal town of Kuala Kangsar tomorrow.

The private secretary to the Sultan of Perak, Datuk Abdul Rahim Mohamad Nor, said the Regent of Perak, Raja Dr Nazrin Shah, had consented to the swearing-in of State PAS secretary Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin as the Menteri Besar.

Mohammad Nizar, who is also Pasir Panjang assemblyman, will take his oath of office, pledge of loyalty and secrecy before Raja Nazrin at 11.30am, he said in a statement faxed to Bernama today.

Malaysia's Opposition Reborn

By Tion Kwa
(Tion Kwa is a Fellow at the Asia Society.)

In Malaysia's recent elections, opposition parties managed their strongest showing since the country gained its independence from Britain in 1957, cutting the ruling coalition's parliamentary majority to below two-thirds. Where the country's newly invigorated democracy goes from here rests with one man, Anwar Ibrahim, the deputy prime minister sacked by former premier Mahathir Mohamad and later jailed.

Anwar can finally make the opposition a credible check on the National Front ruling coalition, but knows that he will never become prime minister this way. No one, after all, expects the opposition to win enough seats to form a government in the conceivable future. He can allow himself to be wooed back by his former party, the United Malays National Organization (UMNO), the National Front's leading member.

UMNO is widely believed to have held talks with Anwar before. Now, more than ever, it needs Anwar to reestablish its credibility. And, to become prime minister, Anwar needs UMNO.

Arguably, being inside UMNO and the government would allow Anwar to better institute the reforms he has so ardently advocated. But, before all that, Anwar needs to get himself elected to parliament again.

If Anwar were to marry his leadership and charisma to the opposition's newfound heft in the federal legislature - 82 MPs, compared with 20 in the last parliament - serious policy alternatives to the government's might be expected. Until now, the opposition has chiefly acted as an irritant, and voters viewed debates as entertainment, rather than as exchanges that informed policy.

For the same reason, policy platforms have never been important for the opposition in elections. Many who voted for the DAP on Saturday, for example, are unlikely to have known or cared about what the party stood for. Traditionally, people voted for the DAP or the Justice Party to show their displeasure with the National Front. Indeed, if ideas were important, a leftist party like the DAP would have found it difficult to cooperate with the PAS. But cooperate they did......read more.

And, Now See What Happens When You Play Around With The Keris? :

Thus it can perhaps be said that the election results of 2008 are an indicator of the extent to which MCA, Gerakan and MIC have been seen as the running dogs of UMNO in a BN coalition that has grown more and more unbalanced in the eyes of so many. Playing around with kerises is something you do in old movies about silat warriors, but not in the context of modern-day Malaysian politics where respect for cultural diversity and the equal pride and status of all communities should be paramount. The hot-heads in UMNO Youth may have been playing to the Malay gallery when they pulled the stunt of drawing the keris in public, but the catastrophic damage they did to the image and standing of their component BN partners was beyond calculation. In the end, however, it is not the keris, but rather the clumsy hand that wields it that is to be blamed. UMNO’s two-faced management of race-relations, which was flawed from the outset, has undone itself and the BN. To quote the popular refrain: “Padan Muka”.

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Blogger Zawi said...

We saw trouble in Perlis when it took 7 mmeetings bewtween Shahidan and Pak Lah to finalise the list of contestants. There was further trouble when the Raja refuse to accept Shahidan as the MB. Ain't that clear enough sign to tell Shahidan that he is not good enough to be MB.
I guess it is time for Shahidan to concentrate in enriching himself further with his Bernas. Afterall Bernas is ths ole importer of rice into Malaysia. With such a monopoly, it is of course easy for him to make money. I prefer smugled rice because I do not have to help Shahidan to enrich himself.

March 17, 2008 11:39 AM  

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