Cabinet tomorrow should give mandate to Najib to summon emergency Parliament to defend national sovereignty and protect security of Sabahans and security forces personnel
DAP and Pakatan Rakyat fully support all necessary measures in the Sabah Sulu crisis to defend the honour and sovereignty of the nation and to protect the security and safety of the people of Sabah and the security forces personnel.
The Sabah Sulu crisis is no partisan issue but affects the national sovereignty and security of the people of Sabah and the security forces personnel stationed in the state, and for this reason, all Malaysians, political parties and coalitions must rise above their differences to take a common position to advance the national cause and the people’s fundamental rights to peace, safety and livelihood.
It is for this reason that immediately after the Lahad Datu shootout last Friday, where two police commandoes were killed, the DAP leadership called on all Malaysians to rally as one people to face the Sabah Sulu crisis.
This is why I had said in a public statement after the Lahad Datu and Semporna shoot-outs:
“Patriotic Malaysians have many questions about the handling of three-week stand-off with the Sulu armed intruders in Lahad Datu and whether the casualties of the security forces could have been avoided if the whole situation had been properly handled right from the beginning.
“These doubts and queries, however legitimate, must now take second place, as there is no doubt that the country is faced with a crisis involving national sovereignty and the people’s security which must take topmost priority.”
DAP proposed an all-party council be formed, with representatives from both the ruling and opposition coalitions, to help deal with the Sulu Sabah crisis to show the world that Malaysians, regardless of political affiliation, race, religion or region, are united as one in protecting the sovereignty of the nation and the security of the people and the security forces.
Additionally, DAP also called for an emergency meeting of Parliament within the week to address the Sabah Sulu crisis.
The Pakatan Rakyat leadership has yesterday endorsed the call for an emergency meeting Parliament as well as proposing an all-party roundtable conference to unite all political forces in the face of the Sabah Sulu crisis.
So far there has been no response from Najib to the proposal for an emergency meeting of Parliament as well as an all-party roundtable conference on the Sabah Sulu crisis.
At the first session of the International Conference on Malaysia 13th General Elections at Lake Club in Kuala Lumpur yesterday on “An appraisal of the electoral democracy in Malaysia”, I had asked the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, who is the Minister in charge of parliamentary affairs, to use his good office to convey to the Prime Minister the call for an emergency Parliament to deal with the Sabah Sulu crisis.
I understand that Nazri, who was on the same panel as myself, had told the press later that this was an issue which had to be decided by the Prime Minister.
Nazri is right - only the Prime Minister can decide whether an emergency meeting of Parliament is to be convened, as even the Speaker has no power on the issue.
However, as the principle of collective responsibility applies to all Ministers, the Cabinet tomorrow should give the mandate to Najib, if the Prime Minister is still hesitant, to summon an emergency Parliament to defend national sovereignty and protect the security and safety of Sabahans and security forces personnel stationed in the state.
In view of the urgency of the issue, DAP and PR Members of Parliament are prepared to attend such an emergency meeting of Parliament even on Friday, which will be 8th March 2013 – fifth anniversary of the 12th General Elections electing the present 12th Parliament – should Najib give the nod for the proposal.