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Send it to the ballot box!
Published:  Feb 20, 2009 1:11 AM
Updated: 12:13 PM

vox populi big thumbnail 'I read that phrase time and time again in the judgments of our courts by judges including the former CJ, Sultan Azlan Shah.This is the wise, informed choice for the Perak crisis'.

On PM: They've disrespected sultan's decision

Ahmad Kamal: BN/Umno is gearing up to do something desperate in the name of 'disrespecting the sultan'.

I hope their Royal Highnesses in the former Malay states refrain from playing into the hands of the Umno.

Umno has not been their saviour as Mahathir in his 20 year regime saw it fit to cut off the Malay Rulers from any decision-making as constitutional monarchs.

He had his first fight with Tunku Abdul Rahman and the rest is history.

As de jure heads of their elected government, they act on the advice of their chief ministers/ prime minister. But cool heads are needed.

‘Send it to the ballot box!' I read that phrase time and time again in the judgements of our courts by judges including the former CJ, Sultan Azlan Shah. Send it back to the rakyat .

This is the wise, informed choice with regards to the Perak crisis.

Andrew Goh:

With due respect, the sultan should not be dragged into this political crisis. With the coming by-election in Perak for a parliamentary seat, the people will have their say.

For the BN to speak on behalf of the sultan, it would mean that if the BN were to lose the coming by-election, the prestige of the sultan will suffer.

Don't blame Pakatan Rakyat for this because it is BN who dragged the sultan's name into the political field.

Yet, the Perak crisis can easily be solved by calling into session the Perak state assembly to determine who has the majority support.

Why hasn't this done by the BN menteri besar? Who then is prolonging this political instability in Perak?

Minghock:

PM Abdullah likens the move to suspend Perak MB Zambry Abdul Kadir and his six excos as tantamount to disrespecting the sultan's wishes.

He should first ask whether the way in which BN snatched power from Pakatan in Perak was tantamount to disrespecting the rakyat 's wishes.

Perry:

It is supposed to be mind-boggling, but nothing surprises us in Malaysian politics anymore. Weird court decisions, a partisan police and attorney general, a party-worker as Election Commission chief, etc.

BN is pushing the ‘saga of Perak' in their old, usual fascist-fashion, totally oblivious to the changes that Malaysian society went through over the past few years.

They bulldozed through to take over Perak, to save the face of a perpetually losing DPM (Permatang Pauh, Kuala Terengganu).

BN has also rushed through to get their ‘impostor-CM' sworn in by His Royal Highness Sultan Azlan Shah, without thinking of all the consequences.

Now, the mess and constitutional crisis are of their own doing. His Highness is a very wise and intelligent man, but still just a man. He has made a mistake by acceding to pressures of BN.

Now what? DYMM Sultan Azlan Shah should get really involved and ask BN and PR to dissolve the assembly and hold new state elections.

Whoever gets 30 assembly persons should form the state government. Period.

Maniam Sankar: I suppose Pak Lah couldn't very well not join the Umno bandwagon in decrying any attempt to unseat the ‘new' Perak government as an act against the ruler and therefore treason.

And he went on to say that Speaker Sivakumar may have suspended the new MB to ensure Pakatan has a majority. It brings up two interesting issues.

One, this ‘treason reason' is being used by only Umno thus far; they being the beneficiary of the action that resulted in the alleged ‘treason'.

Surely, they must be the last to criticise anyone for an action that benefitted them directly. Has anyone noticed the deafening silence from the rest of BN ?

Two, what is wrong if the speaker's act lost BN its majority? The ruler's action, too, lost the previous Pakatan government its ruling powers to Umno's benefit even without BN having a majority.

C'mon Pak Lah, grow up. Neither the ruler's action nor BN's supposed right to rule is divine. As you sow, so shall you reap.

On Crisis looms: Perak MB, 6 excos suspended

P Ramakrishnan: Democracy is in crisis in Perak. When politicians don't respect the democratic process or refuse to accept the verdict of the people as to their choice of government, it is democracy that falls victim to these unscrupulous elements.

What has happened in Perak is the subversion of the people's government by elements courting unethical and corrupt people to bring about the downfall of a duly-elected government.

This dishonourable government that was created by the BN to frustrate the will of the people now finds itself out-manoeuvred and out-smarted by the original group that was elected into power as the people's government.

It would appear that there would be no end to this political game unless fresh elections are held for the people to settle this issue once and for all. People are frustrated and angry that the government elected to govern is unable to govern.

Governance through their elected representatives has come to a standstill. This situation is intolerable and totally unacceptable. This stalemate should not be allowed to linger on.

The only solution to resolve this predicament is to dissolve the state assembly and hold fresh elections. This is something that Aliran has been advocating ever since the trouble started in Perak.

Since the Election Commission seems to be willing and eager to conduct elections simultaneously on April 7, 2009, it would be appropriate to have the Perak state elections on April 7 as well.

In the interest of the nation, the crisis in Perak must be brought to an end through the will of the people. Let the people decide decisively on their choice of government.

This is very crucial particularly at a time when concrete strategies from an accountable government are sorely needed to combat the ravages of recession.

Let the political game end forthwith and let's get back to the serious business of running a government in the interest of the people and the state. ( The writer is Aliran president .)

Thai Eng: The newly-minted BN menteri besar of Perak and his exco cannot appear in the Perak Dewan Undangan Negeri. How deserving after having getting themselves appointed using dubious means.

The BN Perak MB has acknowledge the position of the speaker of the Perak DUN when he is said to have paid the speaker a courtesy call on Feb 17.

Some members of Perak BN call the suspension against the rule of law. Now they are talking about the rule of law. What about taking over the Perak government with ‘jumping frogs'?

The newly-minted and suspended MB now claims the speaker is a liar when the latter claimed that he and the exco had not provided any explanation for how they were appointed.

Could he explain to all Perakians how he was appointed as MB? Come, come explain to us Perakians. Don't just give those cheesy smiles which were caught by the TV crews.

Get serious, the crisis you and your BN has brought about is not a joke to us Perakians. According to legal experts , the Perak speaker does indeed have these suspension powers. Kudos to the speaker.

Long live the Pakatan MB. Perakians are still waiting to double confirm you in your rightful position. Let us have our say.

To HRH the Sultan of Perak, please listen to us your subjects - dissolve the state assembly and have a snap election. Let Perakians have their say. As for the suspended BN MB and his exco: ‘Hee, hee, hee!'

Ong: Now that the Perak state assembly speaker V Sivakumar has suspended seven BN members, Pakatan Rakyat once again holds the majority in the Perak state assembly.

What BN, who controls the central government, needs to do is to place V Sivakumar under ISA detention, thus allowing the deputy speaker, Hee Yit Foong to assume the speaker's position.

This acting speaker will then cook up some reason to suspend all the members of the Special Privileges Committee.

BN will once again regain it's majority. Looks like the saga will continue for a while yet.

On Suspension: 'This is like treason'

Patriotician: ‘Vigneswaran also asked why Pakatan could not wait for the decision by the courts on the suit filed by the alliance's ousted menteri besar Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin to challenge the appointment of Zambry.'

Why, Vigneswaran, don't ask the same of BN, that is - ‘Why can't BN accept the choice of the rakyat of Perak made on March 8, 2008 but resorted to unconstitutional means to take over the Perak government?'

Obviously you are a ‘yes-man' for BN right?

On Please migrate if you cannot respect the sultans

A Rakyat Malaysia: The writer, though he stated he is not a racist, is evidently blaming the current bad political situation in Perak on the non-Malays.

I also do not like the present state of affairs but then aren't the politicians to be blamed ? Are all politicians non-Malays ?

I respect the sultan for his status. I believe the sultan has his reasons when making certain decisions. But, of course, there will definitely be people who will not agree with the sultan whatever his decision be.

To me, demonstrations and shouting in the presence of the sultan are definitely not right. Proper channels should be used instead.

Anyway, this is just a short note to remind the writer that there are many parties, Malays and non-Malays, that are involved in this political nightmare.

Not all non-Malays disrespect the sultan and not all Malays show due respect to the sultan. I am quite sure of that. In short, before we blame others, take a good look at ourselves first.

On MP: Why were they killed?

Vijay: I will gladly accept the police explanation that they were forced to shoot back when attacked by the suspects.

Nevertheless, it seems extremely strange that when facing a platoon of heavily-armed policemen, the suspects would choose to fight rather than surrender.

As is usual under these circumstances, the police would defend their action by stating that several policemen have been killed or injured in previous incidents.

While this must be true, I am sure the public would welcome more light on the matter. Perhaps the police can tell us how many policemen died or were injured in similar encounters and how many suspects were killed, in say, the last 10 years.

But much more importantly, I would like to know the number of suspects who were only injured and were thus arrested by the police.

It defies belief that in almost every single cops-suspects clash, all the suspects were invariably killed. Maybe Dean Johns was absolutely right in his recent article Getting away with murder?

John F Joseph: It's a familiar script. ‘The criminals shot at us first. Police shot back in self-defence. Criminals all dead. Police all safe.'

Then they hold a press conference and show the arsenal of the criminals to the ‘we won't ask any questions' mainstream media who will dutifully gloat over the triumph of the police the next day all over the front-pages.

The police seem to have taken their script for extra-judicial killings from Latin America and the Philippines under Marcos.

In the US, a cop will be in serious trouble if the death of a ‘criminal' occurs during an operation. He will be suspended and his badge and gun will be taken away pending an internal investigation and a committee hearing.

All the other cops will keep a good distance from the errant cop during this period and give him ‘the look'.

In Malaysia, however, no questions are asked. I remember once keeping tabs on the number of such police operations during a two month period.

There were 50 unexplained killings during that two-month period. No one batted an eyelid.

Faizal Ali: I think we should be careful in pre-judging why the policemen did what they did.

If the victims were as innocent as N Gobalakrishnan makes them out to be, then why didn't they just surrender to the police and why were they carrying weapons?

Families are too close to the victims to make an unbiased opinion. No mother would want to believe that the child that they raised is a robber or a killer but it happens.

What we don't want is our police personnel having second thoughts when they confront dangerous criminals.

What gain do they get by killing these people indiscriminately anyway? We have to remember that because of them, we are able to live in relative peace in this country.

On Audio tape on Zaki's 'corruption' surfaces

Peter Ooi: Karpal Singh's revelation of an audio recording of Zaki's admission of offering bribes to court staff really cast a serious doubt of the latter's credibility and integrity.

Offering bribes is definitely a crime, especially when it was done by an official of the court.

Now that Zaki's past behaviour is questionable, how is it possible for him to pass judgement on an accused committing a crime similar in nature to the one allegedly committed by him?

Elizabeth Wong did not do anything that is criminal in nature, yet she puts the interest of the party and Selangor far above hers. She resign from her posts.

Now that Zaki's credibility is being questioned, he has two choices- clear his name legally or resign.

On Court cancels arrest warrant for Perak rep

G-man: This is a another example of how biased our police force is - the arrest warrant was only cancelled 10 days after it was issued and the culprit was not even arrested.

I am sure that if it was an opposition politician, he/she would probably have been in a lock-up within hours.

If this is how our 'justice' system works, can you blame us rakyat for completely having lost all faith in it?

On Scandal-hit firm likely to get water tunnel deal

Concerned Professional: The government just keeps getting plagued by controversies and scandals- IJN, Labu LCCT and now the tunnel works for the Pahang Water Transfer Project.

This will continue as long as power-brokers lurk the corridors of power to blatantly subvert government policies and even subjugate them to feed their lust for greed and power.

One is reminded of the alleged ways and exploits of the so-called ‘Tingkat Empat' made infamous by Mahathir in his blog.

The water tunnel works, originally to be showcased as PM Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's much touted benchmark for open tenders has since turned into an unbecoming tussle and is fast becoming a farce.

The project now appears to be tainted with scandal and corruption.

One would have thought that the government would act decisively to revert to the basic principles of the open tender system, to be completely transparent and vigilant against abuses or corruption to save whatever reputation it has.

It appears not.

On Police blow RM15 mil on KT by-election

Ganesh: I am utterly shocked with this report that that the police spent RM15 million for the Kuala Terengganu by-election.

This figure is utterly shocking in an environment of an economic downturn. Is this how the BN- led government conserves money during an economic downturn?

If the police alone can spend RM15 million on such a small election, what was the final bill for the whole by-election? A few hundred million?

Also, if the police can spend RM15 million on just one state, what happens in a general election? Will the figure be RM15 million multiplied by 13 states?

What is more intriguing is the detailed bill for the RM15 million figure. A shocking RM6 million, the largest breakdown, was spent for the rental of canopies. How can the mere rental of canopies come up to RM6 million?

I am resigning from my job with immediate effect and starting a canopy-rental company. If a few days of work can reap RM6 million in a fiscal year, I can easily make few hundred million in profit.

This is definitely the business I want to go in. The profits are far more higher than most Bursa Saham-listed companies.

I think an audit committee needs to look into the exorbitant spending of the police, especially this RM6 million spent on the canopy-rental.

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