Thursday, March 20, 2008

Ruler: Regard events as lesson

ARAU: After keeping his silence since polling day, the Raja of Perlis yesterday spoke frankly about the recent impasse over the state leadership.

Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Putra Jamalullail said the events leading to the appointment of the Perlis menteri besar should be regarded as a lesson for future events.

"Now, that matter has become history. We cannot change the past. But I hope in future, every government officer would hold closely and respect the constitution.

"If not, the country and state would be in chaos," he said after witnessing the swearing-in of seven state executive council members in Istana Arau.

He was speaking off the cuff despite having a prepared text with him during the 11.30am ceremony.
He said the events which led to the appointment of Datuk Dr Md Isa Sabu were out of the ordinary.

"In these past few days, there was an unusual event which occurred in Perlis.

"It was a change in which the elected representatives and assemblymen did not give a vote of confidence for the previous menteri besar.

"This matter had confused the laymen. But for those who knew and understood the law, it was a simple matter."

Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin said there were parties who took advantage of the supposed confusion over the matter.

"However, there were some who had used certain parties, including the newspapers, for their own benefit."

He said the appointment of Md Isa was done according to Perlis' constitution, and was based on the constitutional monarchy principle.

Md Isa was appointed on Monday.

The ceremony was also witnessed by the Raja Muda of Perlis Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Jamalullail, former state secretary Datuk Ismail Othman and state legal adviser Abdul Rasid Sudin.

The Raja of Perlis thanked former menteri besar Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim and his previous exco members for leading the state government during the past four years.

He advised the new executive councillors and assemblymen to fulfil their obligations as elected representatives of the people. On development, he urged the new state leadership to set up a think-tank for education and solve the people's problems.

Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin would also seek help from Universiti Sains Malaysia, of which he is the chancellor, to develop the think-tank.

- Strait times online