Judging from the latest progress in Malaysia’s politic, in Perak particularly, few things can be learned by all of us, the spectators. As I list down few important lessons to be observed by us, the rakyat, we should not stop praying that one day, some one will stand up and bring us out from this hell hole created by those people who claimed themselves as the rakyat’s representatives. Let us throw back this hell straight to their faces, so that by doing so they will get back on track – to serve us, the people.
Lesson No. 1
Don’t steal anything from others, if you couldn’t accept the fact someone else stole something that is yours.
Well, not to say that stealing is OK, it is not, in any given circumstances. I’m just using the analogy of stealing because it’s the best to show how politician actually say things without even thinking. Why did I say so? Looking back after the historic political tsunami on 8th of March 08, we saw how 5+1 states was wrestled from BN by PR via general election. Well done, I must said. PR deserved the 6 states, because the people voted them in. Yes indeed people in Selangor, Kedah, Kelantan, Wilayah Persekutuan and Perak voted them to run the state governments NOT federal government.
However, as a malay adage goes “diberi betis nak paha pula”, Anwar Ibrahim with confidence and full determination said that PR will takeover federal government on 16th of September 08, few months after the election via crossing overs of BN lawmakers. Since then, PR lured BN MPs to jump ship, they attack, they persuade, they stalked, they chased them up to Taiwan, everything they could do to claim Putrajaya. Nasarudding of Bota jumped ship first, into the open arms of Anwar Ibrahim as he announced his latest ‘catch’ in a press conference in PJ. “This is a start of many more crossovers”, “From Bota to Putrajaya” So they started to hit the drums in joy and confidence. Their feet weren’t at all on the ground.
Then suddenly, they dropped face first to the ground!
Three ADUNs in Perak switched from PR to BN, and this caught everyone especially Anwar by surprise. To add salt to the wound, Anwars short lived blue-eye boy, Nasaruddin of Bota, made the most ‘unsangkarable’ U-turn by returning back to BN. Anwar Ibrahim and PR was brought back and down to earth by their own ‘weapon’.
Like a verbal diarrhea, all blames were targeted to BN. One of Anwar’s favourite ammo is statutory declaration, and in no time, one statutory declaration implicating Najib trying to lure ADUNs with cash was brought to the media. Issues of morality regarding issue of crossing over now becomes relevant, something PR never talked about few months back.
If you are not prepared to face the same consequences that your enemy would have experienced as a result of your homemade weapon, therefore don’t pull the trigger, or simply just don’t even talk about it!
I guess lesson well delivered. Well learned? I don’t know.
Lesson No. 2
Morality and Legality, they do not tend to get along together, as you might expect it to
Two issues that happened last month brought me to this point. The first issue is party hopping, and the other one is Elizabeth Wong semi-nude pics.
Remember when Anwar fired his first salvo regarding 16th September plan? BN leaders came to the surface and tried to give an impression that such move by Anwar is immoral, since Anwar tried to takeover Federal government through backdoor. Even I did write an article condemning such act, on basis of morality. Obviously, both sides, be it BN or PKR, never thought of morality. Not even the slightest touch of it. The proofs, when Nasaruddin of Bota jumped into PKR, Anwar didn’t say anything about morality, furthermore, Nasaruddin was lifted as the hero, the brave, the fighter who realized BN is not the right party to him.
Nasaruddin was none of above, at least to PKR supporters’ minds, 10 days after the historical move (quoting from Anwar Ibrahim). From zero to hero, or should I say from hero to zero. Either way, what he did was legally OK, but if you try to debate on basis of morality, we are going nowhere, trust me.
Similarly, when Elizabeth Wong semi-nude pics were circulated in cyber world, the issues of morality and legality arose. This time, I have to admit that Eli Wong is the victim of breach of personal space, but I’ve seen so many pictures of politician’s sons, daughters, and wives being used to paint negative image on particular politicians. This has been a practice in Malaysia’s politics for as long as I can remember.
Okay, let’s put aside Eli’s case, since it has been made a police case, let’s not interfere with police’s investigations. I had also written an article on doctored pictures produced by political party supporters in an effort to defame, and give negative implication on their political enemy. I strongly condemn such act. And if it doesn’t ring any bells still, I should just mentioned the name of the culprit here, you know Tian Chua?
If you don’t, he was the one who wanted to ‘smash’ reporters’ head when asked about any possibilities that he once had a relationship with Eli Wong. Both are singles so people do get curious sometimes.
Okay, so let’s not get ourself mixed up. Morality and legality should be hand in hand, but in Malaysia’s politic, we hardly see that being the case so often.
Lesson No. 3
If you don’t know the content of the constitutions, don’t try to interpret it, experts do at times contradict themselves
This lesson, I will not take credit for. Because, this point was raised by Jebat Must Die (www.jebatmustdie.wordpress.com). When there are confusions with regards to federal or state constitutions, few names will appear in electronic media or press, giving their side of understandings according to their own specialties. The likes of Prof Aziz Bari from UIA, Prof Agus of UKM and others were made the point of references by the media. Even among themselves, we do get different interpretations on the content of the constitution.
But this time, one name that is alien to me surfaced. Tommy Thomas, the constitutional expert, a lawyer by profession is quoted by Anwar Ibrahim in his blog to give pro-PR interpretations of the constitution. Nobody put it more clearer that Jebat Must Die, I thanked him for writing an article highlighting on how inconsistent this so called constitutional expert is, that goes by the name of Tommy Thomas. It’s a worthwhile read, you’ll be amazed by how people can tailor their ‘knowledge’ to justify according to their belief or loyalty to party or certain people.
Back in October 2008, Tommy Thomas (if it is the same person as above) was interviewed by The Nut Graph. This Constitutional expert reiterated time and time again in his interview that it is within the powers of the Monarchy to select who would be the Prime Minister.
Since the state constitution of Perak follows closely to the Federal Constitution, we can juxtapose what he is saying then to the situation we have now in Perak.
Among the pertinent points he said were:
“Then Abdullah would have to visit the palace and inform the king that he has lost the confidence of his own party, and so tender his resignation and the resignation of his cabinet. And the king will accept that.
When that happens, there is a vacancy in the office of the prime minister. At that point of time, the king has a free hand, because Article 43(2)(a) [of the Federal Constitution] — the appointing process — comes into play. The king can decide whether he calls the new leader of the Barisan Nasional (BN), which will be Najib; or somebody else who, in the king’s judgment, enjoys majority support in the Dewan Rakyat.”
Note he continued on to say that dissolution of the Parliament is not necessary:
“As outlined in Article 43(4), if Abdullah himself feels he has lost the majority support for whatever reason, including that he is losing support within Umno, he is entitled to visit the king [to do the following]. He can tell the king he wants to tender his resignation and that of his cabinet because he thinks he no longer enjoys the support of the majority of the lower house (the Dewan Rakyat), and ask for Parliament to be dissolved. And call [for] elections.
He is entitled to ask [which is one of his prerogatives as sitting prime minister]. But it is the king’s prerogative whether to say yes or no. The king can take into account the interests of the nation, economic factors, political turbulence, the fact that elections were held recently, the costs involved, etc. But the discretion is the king’s.”
He even became nostalgic in order to strengthen his point of views:
“We are invited to interpret Article 43(4) which reads: “If the PM (JMD : in this case the MB) ceases to command the confidence of the majority of the members of the House of Representatives, then, unless at his request the Yang diPertuan Agong dissolves Parliament, the prime minister shall tender the resignation of the cabinet.”
What we are trying to do is find out what is the intention of our founding fathers. That is what the task is all about. How do you interpret those words?
Who are the founding fathers? First, the five members of the Reid Commission — two members from the UK, one from Australia, one from India and one from Pakistan — the senior Commonwealth members. The other group of people are Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun VT Sambanthan and Tun Tan Cheng Lock.
What we are trying to do is interpret their words, 43(4), with the intention they had in mind. Some legal experts have said it is limited to a poll, a vote of no confidence in the Dewan Rakyat. My argument is that cannot be the intention because if it is so limited, then the language would have been something like this: “If the Prime Minister is defeated on a motion of confidence in the House of Representatives, then…” So you see the opening words of 43(4) and my imaginary version are very different…the actual wording is far more general, broad and wide, whereas the other is specific and limited to one method.
But the important thing is that it is the king’s satisfaction that matters. The king must be satisfied that the prime minister of the day no longer enjoys the confidence of the majority of the lower house. So what that means actually is that the king cannot act arbitrarily; there must be some objective facts, some proof, some reason for him to act.
How he goes about satisfying himself on this point is up to the king.”
This is from the same lawyer that is representing Pakatan Rakyat now! Of course during that interview, he was justifying whether can Anwar Ibrahim, the potential usurper, be a Prime Minister through crossovers. All Pakatan Rakyat supporters hailed those interviews as a reference point at that time.
Now, they are singing a different tune.
However, since all Pakatan Rakyat lawyers are highly principled and beyond reproach, I am sure they will not flip flop their way in front of public’s eyes. Hopefully V. Sivakumar did not choose the wrong lawyer. Anyway, by being the lead counsel to question the Sultan’s decision, are we now suppose to think that his interviews back in last October were rubbish?
Bravo to JMD, and I finished my article with that. Hope that’s not too heavy for you to read. I hope I will not write about Perak fiasco any longer, this has been going on for ages now. It has to stop, politician should set their minds on economy. Recession is a real thing and with how things are going now, recession might hit Perakians harder.