A Malaysian Malaysia - Perak Dilemma | Malaysian Sentinel : Malaysia's Politics from a Malaysian Citizen Blogger

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Malaysian Malaysia - Perak Dilemma

The DAP-PKR-PAS coalition has submitted an official list of candidates to Perak Sultan Azlan Shah.

The list was handed over to the Sultan’s secretary at 2pm today by a tripartite delegation, and the Ruler is expected to make an announcement within the next two days.

At a joint press conference, DAP chairperson Ngeh Khoo Ham confirmed that each party has submitted one name.

They are Ngeh himself who is Sitiawan assemblyperson, Pasir Panjang assemblyperson Mohamad Nizar Jamaludin and PKR’s Behrang assemblyperson Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi.

“All three parties have unanimously agreed that we will fully endorse the Sultan’s choice,” said Ngeh, speaking for coalition.

He stressed that, irrespective of the Sultan’s choice, the new coalition government will make decisions collectively.

“We therefore call upon party supporters from all three parties to fully support the new menteri besar,” he said

Asked why three names had been submitted - instead of the coalition settling for one nominee - Ngeh replied that the decision was made based on various aspects of the state constitution.

Complex circumstances

Under the state constitution, the menteri besar has to be a Malay Muslim, but there is a provision that allows the Sultan to waive the requirement.

None of the 18 DAP elected representatives are Malay Muslim, even though the party controls the most number of seats in the new state government.

It is learnt that the three of seven Malay Muslim PKR assemblypersons were ruled out as they are deemed not to have suitable paper qualifications.

This makes Mohamad Nizar, 51, the frontrunner as he has academic credentials and ranks high in the PAS Perak hierarchy.

Observers have noted that the three parties cannot automatically nominate Mohamad Nizar for the post, or the DAP would suffer severe political repercussions.

DAP has vehemently rejected PAS’ conservative religious agenda in favour of a secular ‘Malaysian Malaysia’ and had even left the PAS-PKR Barisan Alternatif coalition in protest in 2001.

In each general election, however, DAP has worked out a seat-distribution formula with PKR to avoid three-corner fights.

Article: Malaysiakini
It is a complex situation especially if you look at from a this-is-how-we-use-to-do-it stance. But think outside the box and looking at it from a democratic point of view - the answer is obvious. The party that won the most seats should take the lead. It is what the people voted for and it is what the people should get. In this case, it was DAP who pulled in the most seats for the state of Perak. PAS should not make it so much an issue since they already have Kedah and Kelantan. PKR has already got Selangor. Whereas Penang was outrightly won by DAP. So to balance things out, Perak should got to DAP. But some people may defer on this but we all can have an opinion on it.

Would the non-Chinese mind a Chinese Chief Minister? Or is the idea of race-politics totally ingrained into the minds of Malaysians, that they are unable to look beyond race or religion? But for all that democracy promises, these issues of the person's creed, race or religion holds such importance in choosing the leader. The Perak Dilemma is no different then the one America (the world's biggest democracy) is facing.

Should they elect an African-American or a Woman into the most powerful seat of power in the world?

Even Obama's religious stand was put into question, who says these things only happen in Malaysia? A (so-called) civilized nation like America, would put into question the same issues we deal with when choosing their leaders.

By all logic it should go down to the best person for the job and the choice for Perak rest solely on the shoulders of the Regent of Perak. There is great respect for Sultan Azlan Shah and whatever decision he makes would have taken into consideration the welfare of the state and its people. I believe he would be able to chose the best person for the job. The person that best fits the wants of the people. The best person that would work with the people, to make Perak a great state.

It would also be a test of tolerance and unity on the part of the political parties involve and the people who voted them in. Remember, it was the people who voted the people in and these same people demand that they be heard. These are Malaysians choosing what they want for Malaysia.

I pray that no matter who gets chosen, it would a Malaysian who strives to make Malaysia a better place.


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