Selangor Menteri Besar Mohamed Azmin Ali today said Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah’s advise to stop playing up "sensitive issues" had come at the right time.
In the wake of a controversy between the Selangor palace and Pakatan Harapan chairperson Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Azmin, who is also PKR deputy president, said that all parties should heed the sultan’s advice and maintain harmonious relations in the state.
“The Tuanku’s advise that no party should play up sensitive issues is very timely, it should be heeded and embraced by all parties,” said Azmin in his speech this morning at an investiture ceremony held in conjunction with the Sultan Sharafuddin’s 72nd birthday celebration.
Earlier in his speech, Azmin (photo) also recounted a history of the Selangor sultanate and said people should be enlightened about the royal institution’s role as enshrined in the Federal Constitution.
Among others, he read excerpts from an article authored by former chief justice Salleh Abbas titled “The Traditional Elements of the Malaysian Constitution” on how the Federal Constitution maintained the identity of the government and the Malays through the royal institution, Islam as a religion, the Malay language and special position of the Malays.
“The monarchy is placed as the most important aspect because the Malay Rulers institution is the creator of the kerajaan (government) from the root word raja (king).
“In the history of the archipelago, the rise of a civilisation and existence of laws were due to the presence of a king,” he said, in pointing out that the nation’s founding father, Tunku Abdul Rahman, had further reaffirmed the Malay Rulers' role in his declaration of independence.
In pledging loyalty to the sultan, Azmin also said that the rakyat is looking towards the Council of Rulers to be the “final criterion” that could protect them from “executive immunity” by the government of the day.
“The rakyat could not accept if immunity is transferred to the executive because it is a form of desecration of the constitution.
“Executive immunity is a gross violation of the letter and spirit of the constitution,” he said in urging the Council of Rulers to play their part and protect the people from a government allegedly immune from actions.
Selangor BN chief Noh Omar at a solidarity rally yesterday claimed that Azmin had chosen to remain silent over alleged insults towards the sultan by Mahathir and former minister Zaid Ibrahim.
Mahathir had last month angered Sultan Sharafuddin after he told Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to "balik Bugis" (go back to Sulawesi).
The Selangor monarch, who is of Bugis descent, deemed the remarks a slur on the community, although Mahathir insisted his remarks were aimed only at Najib.
Zaid, meanwhile, courted a royal rebuke for his tweets warning the sultan against getting involved in partisan politics.