Geryl Ogilvy Ruekeith @theborneopost.com
NEW MEMBERS: Asfia (front, third right) in a photoshoot with some of the newly elected members of the State Legislative Assembly after their meeting and lunch at the new DUN complex yesterday. A total of 22 members would be making their debut at the coming sitting.
State Legislative Assembly Speaker says MoCS has no locus standi to ask Taib to step down
KUCHING: Losers in the recent state election do not have any rights, legitimacy nor the authority to demand for the resignation of the victors.
In view of a recent demand by Movement for Change, Sarawak (MoCS) for Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud to step down, State Legislative Assembly (DUN) Speaker Dato Sri Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar clarified that only Taib and PBB had the final say on such matters.
This was due to the fact that in the April 16 polls PBB won all the seats it contested and the state BN won more than two-thirds of the 71 seats in the DUN.
Speaking to reporters after chairing a briefing session for newly-elected people’s representatives here yesterday, Asfia said the question of asking Taib to step down had never arose within the PBB ranks.
“Losers do not have these rights as the election was held in a democratic, free and fair manner based on the Westminster Parliamentary Model from the UK.”
Asfia added that in any civilised societies, let alone in a country with fair democratic practices, no loser should demand the resignation of the victor or burn the doctrine of mandate in the street.
“Losers should also not threaten the state capital with mass demonstration, jeopardising the city with anarchy and endangering Kuching with flames,” said Asfia in response to MoCS’s threat to hold a demonstration if Taib does not step down by Aug 13.
Further explaining the process, Asfia said in the event of a succession plan the chairman of PBB (Taib) shall convene a meeting of Parliamentary caucus comprising DUN members, MPs and senators in consultation with the state BN component members to find the right successor.
The Head of State would then be informed of the choice to enable him to exercise his prerogative under Article 6 (3)(A) of the constitution which stated; “the Head of State can appoint a member of the Dewan (DUN) who, in his judgment, is likely to command the confidence of the majority of its members.”
Asfia dismissed ideas that the election process based on the US presidential election system would yield a different result.
“We must differentiate between the parliamentary democracy and the American (US) presidential system which is based on the ‘one-on-one’ popular votes.
“Even based on these popular votes, the BN would still win the election. The 2011 state polls recorded 55.3 per cent popular votes for the BN which translated to 55 out of 71 seats. There is a distinction between the parliamentary and presidential system.”
In addition, he advised the public not to be disrupted by the ‘serial comic sideshows’ during this period as the ‘real show’ would be the upcoming DUN sitting.
He added that should such comic sideshows happened and became very serious with threats and possible violent acts then the law should take its course against all those involved.
“This would go down strict on the ‘choreographers’ and ‘puppeteers’ who manipulated on some of the gullible members of the public.”