Sunday, February 1, 2009

tic-tac-toe game in Perak State Assembly

I'm sure you are very familiar with the game of tic-tac-toe, which is a game where nobody win and can be very boring. Now, Perak is facing the same situation with her state assemblymen.

Days ago, an UMNO assemblymen defected to PKR and today, it has been officially revealed that two PKR assemblymen have resigned from the party and likely to join UMNO. It's clearly a game of "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" between Anwar and Najib. The last count for the 59 Perak State Assembly is that Pakatan Raykat hold 30 state seats and Barisan Nasional hold 27 state seats with two seats up for grabs in if by-elections are called.

From TheStar

Perak on the brink

IPOH: The Perak government is teetering on the edge with the resignation of two PKR representatives announced by the state assembly speaker V. Sivakumar earlier Sunday being challenged.

Sivakumar said he had received two faxed letters stating that Jamaluddin Mat Radzi and Mohd Osman Jailu had resigned their posts as assemblymen of Behrang and Changkat Jering respectively.

Their resignations are effective 5:45pm Sunday, he said in a statement, adding that this paved the way for by-elections in the two constituencies within 60 days.

He said he would inform the Election Commission officially Monday morning.

The Commission would then deliberate if and when by-elections are to be called.

However Jamaluddin denied vacating his seat. He said the resignation letter that was supposedly sent to Sivakumar was actually an old, undated “resignation letter” that he and the other six PKR assemblymen were forced to sign in late March last year.

“I am still the state assemblyman for Behrang. I have not resigned. I will challenge the validity of the letter as it was signed under duress,” he claimed, adding that he was discussing with his lawyers as to his next course of action.

He said there was no reason for him to resign his post just because he had problems with PKR leaders.

“My problems are with PKR leaders, not with the people of Behrang. I will not simply shirk my responsibilities to them,” he said.

He also denied rumours that he would be crossing over to Umno and Barisan Nasional, but confirmed that he would quit PKR and remain as an independent.

Mohd Osman could not be reached for comments as at press time.

Their resignations, whether valid or not, come after days of speculation that they were going to defect to Umno.

The Pakatan Rakyat state government is holding on with a razor-thin margin. It now holds 30 state seats against Barisan Nasional’s 27, with two seats up for grabs in the 59-seat State Assembly if by-elections are called.

Worse, rumours are also rife that Perak state assembly deputy speaker Hee Yit Fong, the DAP representative for Jelapang, is going to resign as well and join MCA.

When contacted at her home Sunday night, Hee declined to comment.

Missing in action
Earlier Sunday, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said that neither the state nor family members had been able to reach the two Perak state executive councillors.

He even said the state government would lodge a police report after consulting with their families.

Jamaluddin, 52, was the Perak Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Committee chairman while Mohd Osman, 57, headed the State Tourism and NGO Committee.

They were charged in a Sessions Court on Aug 25 last year with allegedly receiving bribes over the application for a RM180mil housing project in Sri Iskandar in Perak Tengah. Their case comes up for hearing on Feb 10.

After Umno’s Bota assemblyman Datuk Nasarudin Hashim crossed over to PKR last week, PKR and Umno have been involved in a psychological war, with both accusing each other of trying to pinch their assemblymen.

Jamaluddin and Mohd Osman have not been seen in public since Nasarudin crossed over to PKR last Sunday, with the media also failing to reach them for comments.

Speculation had been rife in Perak that the exco duo were going to resign from PKR and become Independents before joining Umno later.

No worries
PAS deputy president Nasharudin Mat Isa said he only knew about the resignation Sunday night and had yet to receive a full report on the matter.

“I do not think that there would be more (people resigning or defecting). As it is, we are calling for a meeting to discuss the matter.

“More will be known on Monday morning,” he said, adding that the decision on who would contest in the by-elections had yet to be reached.

PKR information chief Tian Chua said that PKR is confident that it would be able to retain the seats in Behrang and Changkat Jering.

“We’re not worried -- we have succeeded in taking over the two seats from Barisan in the past, let alone retaining what we already have,” he said.

From MalaysiaInsider

Missing Pakatan lawmaker denies resigning, Perak in chaos

By Leslie Lau

IPOH, Feb 1 — Perak was thrown into a state of confusion tonight after at least one of two missing PKR state legislators denied resigning, hours after the state legislative speaker declared their seats vacant.

Behrang assemblyman Jamaluddin Mat Radzi said tonight that the “resignation letter” received by the speaker this evening was an undated document he was made to sign last March.

His “denial” will throw up questions on the legality or legitimacy of undated resignation letters, and also puts the focus on whether it will be the speaker, the Election Commission or even the courts which will decide such issues.

It is also the latest act in a power struggle which has lasted for weeks for control of the state government.

Earlier the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) government in Perak appeared to have turned the tables on Barisan Nasional (BN) after the state legislative speaker declared vacant the two state seats held by the two PKR lawmakers who were expected to defect.

This would pave the way for by-elections for the two seats within 60 days.

Talk is also rife that a number of Umno state assemblymen are in talks to defect to PR.

The Speaker V Sivakumar said in a statement this evening that he had received resignation letters from the two PKR men had.

Sivakumar said he had received the letters by fax at his house.

He added that the Election Commission would be informed of the vacancy tomorrow.

The announcement capped a dramatic day which began when Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin said he would lodge a police report over the disappearance of Jamaluddin and Changkat Jering assemblyman Osman Jailu.

There have been swirling rumours that Jamaluddin and Mohd Osman, who were charged in a Sessions Court on Aug 25 last year with allegedly receiving bribes over the application for a RM180mil housing project in Sri Iskandar in Perak Tengah, may have decided to defect to Umno in the hopes of getting off the charge.

Their case comes up for hearing on Feb 10.

It appears now that the resignation letters from the two men were undated documents submitted to party leaders immediately after the March general elections.

PR officials in Ipoh say they are confident of retaining the two vacant seats and have indicated that they are also optimistic of a number of defections from BN to strengthen their hold on the state government.

This latest political drama had been sparked by the defection of Umno’s Bota assemblyman Datuk Nasarudin Hashim to PKR.

Following Nasarudin’s defection, the two PKR men disappeared.

Besides the two PKR men, there had also been rumours that that Hee Yit Fong, the deputy state assembly speaker and a DAP assemblyman is considering a defection to MCA.

The Malaysian Insider understands she wants to leave DAP because she does not get along with Nga Kor Ming, a DAP state exco member and Ngeh Koo Ham, the Perak DAP boss and senior exco member.

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