Friday, May 23, 2008
patches of history on Shahrir and Salleh Abbas
In February 1988, Shahrir refused to join the new Umno which was banned and was among eight of the party's Supreme Council members left out of the Umno Baru pro-tem committee led by Datuk Seri (now Tun) Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
With that decision, he became an independent member in Parliament and resigned as MP on April 1988, paving the way for a by-election where as an independent candidate, he defeated BN's Mas'ud Abdul Rahman, enabling him to become an elected MP for Johor Baharu. Shahrir was dismissed from the Dewan Rakyat when he refused to take his oath as a new MP before the then Speaker, Tan Sri Zahir Ismail (now deceased) as the latter was a member of the tribunal that had recommended Chief Justice Tun Salleh Abas be sacked from his judicial post.
But Shahrir eventually took his oath and one year later (1989) he returned to Umno by joining the Gertak Merah branch in the Johor Baharu division.
In the same year, he accepted the offer to be a party Supreme Council member and in 1990, became the Johor Baharu Umno division chief.