Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Khalid resigns as Selangor MB, no snap polls

4:42PM Aug 26, 2014By Ram Anand
The sultan of Selangor has consented to Abdul Khalid Ibrahim's request to relinquish his post as menteri besar.

This debunks speculation of dissolution of the Selangor legislative assembly and subsequent snap polls.

However, the ruler had asked him to remain at the helm until a replacement is appointed.

A jovial looking Khalid(left) read the statement by the palace at a packed press conference at the state secretariat building in Shah Alam this afternoon.

While the sultan appears favourable to a smooth transition of power, he has however instructed Pakatan Rakyat leaders to propose more than two names for the post, citing “convention”.

"The Sultan has ordered for a leader each from PKR, DAP and PAS to submit more than two names among Pakatan Rakyat parties as the menteri besar candidate," the sultan’s press secretary Muhammad Munir Bani said in the statement.

"This is in tune with the convention that has been practised in all previous MB appointments.”

Sultan has 'absolute discretion'

Muhammad Munir also said that the sultan retains "absolute discretion" to appoint a new MB that he feels obtains the majority support of the state assembly.

Asked why he did not ask for dissolution, Khalid told reporters that he felt that his resignation was the best solution to the crisis because the issue in Selangor is about the majority not wanting him to be MB.

"The intention is not to have me as MB, so if I am no longer the MB there is no need (for state assembly dissolution or emergency sitting).

“Why are we going around in circles? If their intention is to change the MB, there are many ways and I want the best way," he said.

"The best way is to accept the request (by resigning)," he added.

He will also request the Selangor palace to release the list of candidates for the MB post that were considered but not appointed in 2008 and 2013.

This was after reporters questioned him if the same convention of submitting several names was practised when Pakatan nominated Selangor MBs both in 2008 and 2013.

"This was practised even during the times of the sultan's father, there were more than four names submitted at one point," he said.

Happy to be free from the job

Previously, PKR and DAP had agreed on PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (below) to replace Khalid.

After initially expressing support for the PKR president, PAS took a different stand after a meeting yesterday.

Earlier, Khalid had met the sultan at his palace in a highly-anticipated audience in the crisis which has dragged on for about month.

Making his announcement, Khalid also stressed that the issue of Wan Azizah's feasibility as a MB or her majority support did not arise in audience.

"No, that was not discussed at all," he said.

Khalid said he also “apologised” to the ruler as the palace was “dragged along” in the Selangor political crisis.

"I hope all parties especially politicians, media and social media users avoid from making statements or criticism to undermine the role played by all involved parties, especially the institution of monarchy," he said.

Khalid also said that he would remain Port Klang assemblyperson at the time being, and refused to divulge any details on his next move until after he has handed over his duties as MB.

But he said that if by any bizarre circumstance any party nominates him as MB, he would refuse as he is "happy to be free from the job".

He, however, refused to state if he will be joining PAS in the future.
~ Malaysiakini

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