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Najib on Perak pow-wow ‘at right time’

By Friday May 15th, 2009 No Comments

MANADO: Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak is ready to meet with the opposition party leaders to discuss the Perak political crisis when “the time is right”.

However, the Prime Minister said, the Opposition must be sincere and not set pre-conditions before the meeting could take place.

“We will decide on right time to meet. We want to see who their representatives are. They say they will not impose any pre-conditions but outside (in public) they say different (things).

“We know what they are saying out there,” he told a press conference on the sidelines of the Coral Triangle Initiative summit here yesterday.

Najib, however, stressed that his willingness to sit together with the opposition leaders did not preclude other options besides the dissolution of the state assembly.

To a question Najib said: “We did not start this thing. This is not Barisan’s doing. Why should we be apologetic?”

He said what had happened in Perak was not a “power grab” as touted by Pakatan Rakyat and nor was it illegal or unconstitutional as it had happened in many countries that practised democratic principles.

He said the Opposition tried to steal 31 Barisan MPs, but had failed.

“When we succeeded in Perak, they turned around and accused us of a power grab instead,” he said, adding that if Pakatan had respected the principles of democracy, the Perak state assembly sitting would have proceeded smoothly.

Instead, he said that Pakatan had tried to derail the sitting by suspending Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Zambry Abdul Kadir together with five of his exco members.

The Sultan of Perak, he said, had the option of appointing a mentri besar from Barisan immediately after last year’s general election as the party had won 28 seats, the largest number of seats among all political parties.

Instead, he said, based on democratic principles, the Sultan appointed Datuk Seri Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin after all the opposition state assemblymen had pledged their support for Nizar.

“But now they are angry with the Sultan when His Highness appointed Dr Zambry based on the same principle, because Nizar had lost the majority support in the state assembly,” he said.

On Penang Gerakan chairman Datuk Dr Teng Hock Nan’s call for the dissolution of Perak state assembly, Najib said, it was just a difference in opinion and he would take that into consideration.

Meanwhile, in Putrajaya, Perak MCA chairman Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha said: “The MCA is always ready to face elections in Perak.”

He said the MCA and its machinery would be ready to spring into action if the Sultan decides that a snap election should be held.

“The MCA is always in a state of readiness when in comes to elections. We will be ready if one is held on the order of the Sultan,” he told a press conference after a visit to the Fire and Rescue Department headquarters here yesterday.

Kong, however, said that since the matter was already in court, the best thing to do now was to wait and allow the legal process to take its course.

Source : The Star

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