Najib denies ISA release meant to calm anger over Perak fiasco

By Thursday May 7th, 2009 No Comments

KUALA LUMPUR, May 8 – Datuk Seri Najib Razak brushed off suggestions today that his administration had been forced to free Internal Security Act (ISA) detainees today to counter the negative perception towards yesterday’s chaotic Perak state assembly proceedings.

The prime minister also denied that he had a hand in directing the recent police crackdown on dissent brought on by unhappiness over the manner in which Barisan Nasional (BN) had seized power in Perak.

Najib said it was not his style to micro-manage the police whom he said were responsible for maintaining law and order.

Yesterday’s state assembly sitting saw police enter a legislative house for the first time in the history of parliamentary democracy in Malaysia to physically remove Speaker V. Sivakumar.

BN leaders claim that MIC’s Datuk R. Ganesan had been elected the new speaker and that the police came inside the assembly on his instruction, but question marks remain over the validity of his appointment because of the shambolic proceedings.

The sitting saw BN and Pakatan Rakyat (PR) lawmakers wrestling with each other amid shouting matches with only a semblance of order restored after five hours.

Speaking to reporters today, Najib, who is also Umno president, brushed aside PR claims that the takeover in Perak was unconstitutional.

He cited Winston Churchill, the former British prime minister, as an example of a politician who had changed parties.

“So which part was unconstitutional?” he asked reporters while referring to BN’s takeover of the Perak state government.

He said the crossover of the three former PR lawmakers was not illegal, adding further that the opposition had threatened to do the same at federal level by September 16 last year.

The prime minister also described as tragic and shameful yesterday’s events in the Perak state assembly.

Source : The Malaysian Insider

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