PUTRAJAYA, 24 May 2009: The political crisis in the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) continues to deteriorate when an emergency meeting claimed to be attended by 1,760 delegates from 778 party branches chose Senator Datuk T Murugiah as the new president.
The latest development gave the impression as though the PPP now has two presidents, while the legitimacy of the emergency meeting held at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) today was also being questioned.
However, at a press conference later, Murugiah, who is a Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, said the general assembly at the PICC today was valid under the party’s constitution.
Responding to a question from the press whether the party constitution provided that only the president could call for the meeting, Murugiah said: “No such thing…legal part leave it to the lawyer to handle it and we too leave all the decision to the ROS (Registrar of Societies), let the ROS investigate”.
He said he would meet with the Registrar of Societies tomorrow to hand over the report on the meeting today.
Murugiah said he would inform Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who is also Barisan Nasional (BN) chairperson, on the decision reached at the meeting.
Commenting on the existence of two PPP presidents, Murugiah said: “The decision had been made by the delegates and the motion had been passed unanimously to choose me … I was only invited to attend the meeting today.
“So, the issue of two presidents does not exist because (party president Datuk M) Kayveas has been relieved of the post and it is not my decision … because it is the decision of all the delegates.”
Before the election was carried out, Murugiah and six other members who had been expelled by the Disciplinary Board earlier for having allegedly committed various offences in the party, were accepted back as party members.
The delegates then agreed to pass a vote of no-confidence against Kayveas and removed him as PPP president.
The delegates also passed the motion to cancel the date for nomination of candidates scheduled for 31 May and postpone the date for the party’s general assembly which had earlier been scheduled for 7 June.
When contacted, Kayveas said he was still the legitimate president of the PPP, saying that the meeting in Putrajaya was illegal.
“They have misled the police and misused the permit which was issued by the authority for another purpose,” he said.
He said Murugiah had no right to call for the meeting as he had already been sacked from the party. — Bernama