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Raja Nazrin Shah can decide on dissolution

PETALING JAYA, 11 May 2009: The Raja Muda of Perak, Raja Nazrin Shah, is empowered by the Perak constitution to decide on a request by the menteri besar to dissolve the state assembly.


Tommy Thomas
Constitutional lawyer Tommy Thomas said that Article 15 under Part II of the state constitution stipulated that the regent could be the acting sovereign in the event that the sultan was away for more than 30 days.

“We can safely assume that Sultan Azlan Shah is away, and that Raja Nazrin Shah is acting sovereign when he (Raja Nazrin) opened the state assembly last Thursday (7 May),” Thomas said in a phone interview today.

Thomas served as legal counsel for embattled Speaker V Sivakumar in the suit brought against him by assemblypersons Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi (Behrang), Capt (R) Mohd Osman Jailu (Changkat Jering) and Hee Yit Foong (Jelapang).

Thomas added that under Article 17 of the constitution, the regent, when acting as the sovereign, is empowered to exercise all the prerogatives and perform all the duties of the sovereign.

“This means that Raja Nazrin Shah can make the decision about dissolving the state assembly as provided under Article 36(2) of the Perak state constitution,” he said.

Earlier today, the High Court ruled that Pakatan Rakyat’s Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin was the rightful menteri besar of Perak, providing some relief to more than three months of uncertainty as to who should head the state government.

A jubilant Nizar, who was in court today, told reporters he would immediately return to Ipoh to seek an audience with Perak ruler Sultan Azlan Shah for a dissolution of the state assembly.

However, it is believed that the sultan is currently overseas, and Nizar will probably seek an audience with Raja Nazrin tomorrow morning in Kuala Kangsar.


Raja Nazrin Shah
Nizar was ousted after the Barisan Nasional (BN)’s Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir was sworn in as Perak menteri besar on 6 Feb following the BN takeover of the state government. The takeover was precipitated by the defection of three Pakatan Rakyat (PR) assemblypersons who opted to become BN-friendly independents, leading to the PR losing its majority in the state assembly.

Nizar had sought an audience with the sultan of Perak on 5 May to request the dissolution of the state assembly but was turned down and instead ordered to step down as MB.

On 13 Feb, Nizar, 52, filed an application to the court for a declaration that he was at all material times the menteri besar of Perak. He also sought a declaration that Zambry had no right to hold the office of menteri besar.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has said that the BN will appeal against the High Court’s decision.

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14 Responses to “Raja Nazrin Shah can decide on dissolution”

  1. M.K. says:

    PR has come this far and is now facing the final hurdle. Hope HRH Raja Nazrin will grant an audience to Nizar and give his consent for the dissolution of the Perak State Assembly, paving the way for another State Election. Let us watch how BN will fare this time around. Don’t be surprised if one or two of them lose their deposits!

  2. Joebuddy says:

    All looks prearranged. They screwed up big-time and are now seeking saving grace.

    Malaysians shall not forget the Perak fiasco and shall not believe the lies of Umno.

  3. kerishamuddinitis says:

    the Sun, morning 11 May, Front Page – ‘If we respect the law, and everyone must respect the law, there won’t be any crisis and things won’t turn into a crisis.” Najib.

    11 May mid-morning – The KL High Court rules that Nizar is the rightful MB in Perak and Zambry is the illegal MB…”and everyone must respect the law…” (Najib)

    11 May late afternoon – BUT Najib goes on TV, Bernama Channel, and says BN will challenge the court’s decision. “Challenge” is not “respect”. And not only is this course of action not respecting the law, it is also not respecting the will and wishes of the people, and the opinions of scores of legal experts of sound and irrefutable reputation who have said in no uncertain terms – Nizar is the rightful MB, has always been the rightful MB and his government is a government of the people, by the people for the people. Therefore, this must be resolved by the people through FRESH ELECTIONS!

    Now, let’s see if “there won’t be any crisis and things won’t turn into a crisis” on the heels of the BN action to challenge the court’s decision instead of agreeing to fresh elections.

  4. perakin says:

    I think BN should appeal against the High Court decision and at the same time, the Regent should consent to the dissolution of the State Assembly. This will allow Perak to immediately stabilise politically and at the same time allow the Court of Appeal to decide at its own leisure time the appeal made by BN against the High Court’s decisions.

    Fair and square.

  5. Dr.Lee Choong Hing says:

    The decision is quite clear and according to the constitution. The prime minister being also a citizen of Malaysia should gracefully accept the decision and agree to fresh elections. BN may still have a chance.

  6. Rakyat Perak 2009 says:

    To safeguard the situation, Sivakumar must file a suit against the fake speaker Ganesan, Hee, Zambry and his excos, State Secretary and PDRM etc. for ignoring his orders, illegally taking over his legal position as speaker and even dragging him out from the assembly house, and further to obtain a court injunction to confirm that the 7 May state assembly is null and void.

    Fast, fast, must act fast, must file the suit by tomorrow or the day after!

  7. CucuAdam says:

    What a relief – Nizar is the lawful MB of Perak, and let us pray that HRH the Sultan of Perak will agree to dissolution of Perak DUN. Let us pray that in the State by-election the Pakatan Rakyat will be returned to power winning more seats.

  8. shiv says:

    Below should read 5th Feb, not 5th May?

    “Nizar had sought an audience with the sultan of Perak on 5 May to request the dissolution of the state assembly but was turned down and instead ordered to step down as MB.”

    Editor’s note: Thanks for pointing this out. We will run a correction later.

    Shanon Shah
    Columns and Comments Editor

  9. Sam Leong says:

    Let’s learn from recent history. Keep a close watch over all persons that matter as they may disappear as many have in the past. Anticipate what your opponent’s next move might be. Another ancient Chinese Art of War to note.

  10. elaine says:

    Perhaps it is part of the drama that the Sultan of Perak is away to give way for his son to make decision as he wants to save Perak. As a person of faith, I see this as providential. Raja Nazrin Shah, history will remember you if you use your power wisely to restore freedom and justice to your people, and they and the children and their children will love you all the more. Help your people against the evil ones. If Najib is wise, he will use this opportunity to make a fresh start instead of going to the court to appeal. Let the people of Perak decide and at least, save BN from total disaster and the possibility of facing extinction in the next election. Think about it tonight, Najib, and check what your dream may tell you to do next: certainly peace, and not violence, to bring in good energy for yourself and your loved ones.

  11. Lainie says:

    After all their crowd-pleasing actions, I’m sure BN will look forward to having elections in Perak.

  12. Right2Choose says:

    The Sultan (or his rep) should consent to the dissolution of the DUN, then let’s watch and see how BN respects the Royalty.

  13. Timothy Lam says:

    Now with the Court of Appeal’s decision on stay of execution – what can be done? May HRH Raja Nazrin make the right decision. Many outstation and overseas Perakians are ready to come back and vote in Perak.

  14. Nik Amir says:

    I believe passionately in democracy. Let the people of Perak choose their government. They are the rightful judge. Let them settle the issue. Please respect their rights.


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