Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 6th February 2009:
Call on Abdullah to support dissolution of Perak State Assembly and holding of state elections and not to end his premiership with a constitutional scandal of two Mentri Besars in Perak
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is wrong when he said that Pakatan Rakyat msut now accept a new government in Perak just as Barisan Nasional had accepted the results of last year’s general election.
The comparison is totally inappropriate. In fact, he should be the last person to make such a statement if he is serious about national integrity and morality in politics and public affairs which is one of his major promises and biggest failures of his premiership.
Abdullah cannot be unaware that there is a world of a difference between last year’s general election result and the current political crisis in Perak engineered by Umno leaders.
Last year’s general election results were the outcome of the exercise of the constitutional and democratic rights of the people of Perak to elect the government of their choice, while the present attempt to oust the legitimate Pakatan Rakyat government by UMNO and Barisan Nasional is a most unethical and opportunistic power-play frustrating the verdict of the voters in the March 8 general election last year.
If Abdullah is sincere and serious in wanting to eradicate political corruption and introduce ethical and principled politics, which he had repeatedly professed publicly, he should dissociate himself from the coup d’etat orchestrated by Deputy Prime Minister and the new Perak Umno leader Datuk Seri Najib Razak in the illegal and unconstitutional power grab in Perak through the defection of three and re-defection of one Perak state assembly person.
I call on Abdullah to support the dissolution of Perak State Assembly and the holding of state elections to resolve the political crisis in Perak and not to end his premiership with a constitutional scandal of two Mentri Besars in Perak.
Even if this is the only legacy of Abdullah in his five-year premiership, it will go a long way to strike a mortal blow at the bane of Malaysian politics – dishonest, unethical, immoral and money politics – and give meaning to the National Integrity Plan which he had launched with such fanfare five years ago but with so little results so far.
Although the Sultan of Perak has rejected the application of the Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin for a dissolution of the State Assembly, Nizar is still the legitimate Mentri Besar until he has been voted out by a “no confidence” motion in the Perak State Assembly.
Until such time, there is no vacancy in the post of Perak Mentri Besar.
Abdullah should advise Najib not to create a constitutional scandal of having two Mentri Besars in Perak and to fully respect the constitutional process and the people’s democratic right and mandate as expressed in last year’s general election – and the most democratic option is to return the mandate to the voters of Perak in a state-wide election to elect a new state government of their choice.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor