UPDATED @ 08:55:12 PM 05-01-2011
By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal
January 05, 2011
Khalid maintains the Sultan agreed he had no powers over the state's civil service appointments. — Picture by Jack Ooi
SHAH ALAM, Jan 5 — Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim has stood by his version of events during an audience with the Selangor Sultan, refuting statements made by palace officials yesterday.
The Selangor mentri besar (picture right) reiterated today that Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah had concurred that the state's Ruler had no power over the appointment of top civil servants in Selangor.
Khalid claimed the remark made by the Sultan's private secretary, Datuk Mohamed Munir Bani, was a "personal one" and did not reflect the Sultan's stand on the matter.
"That is only his (Mohamad Munir's) opinion, that is his statement. The Sultan knows that we discussed it, the impact of the 1993 amendments had reduced the powers of the monarchy. I don't think the Sultan disagrees with this. It is a fact of history.
Yesterday, the Selangor palace has refuted Khalid's version of his audience with the Sultan yesterday, in which the mentri besar said the state ruler had acknowledged he has no power over senior civil service appointments.
Munir stressed yesterday that the Sultan held the executive power and, therefore, had the right to decide on Datuk Mohd Khusrin Munawi's appintment as the new Selangor state secretary.
"The mentri besar's press statement yesterday on January 3 saying that that the Selangor Sultan was of the view that he did not have the power to accept or reject any candidates suggested by the Public Services Commission (PSC) is incorrect," he said.
"What actually happened is that the names of potential candidates for the state secretary post had been presented to His Royal Highness by the Public Services Department which is part of the Public Services Commission."
"As the chief executive of the Selangor state government, the Sultan gave his blessings to one of the candidates. The PSD had after that agreed to the Sultan's choice of candidate through a letter issued by the Public Services Department following Article 52 (1) and (2)a of the state constitution. This is a convention, a normal practice in Selangor," Munir said in a statement yesterday.
The Selangor MB announced yesterday that Selangor will hold an emergency sitting of the state legislative assembly to change the state constitution and return to the mentri besar and Sultan the power to appoint the state's secretary, finance officer and legal advisor.
Khalid also confirmed that Mohd Khusrin will not be invited to take the "oath of secrecy" until the matter was addressed at the "special" state assembly sitting at the end of this month.
He also stressed that the state government would follow proper protocol and procedures in amending the state constitution, saying that the Selangor Sultan would be informed first before the amendments were presented in the next state assembly sitting.
"The proposed amendments will be done following proper prosedures and His Highness the Sultan Of Selangor will be informed before the amendments are tabled in the next state assembly sitting.
"The state exco has agreed to send in a motion to hold a state assembly sitting and Speaker Datuk Teng Chang Kim has been notified," said Khalid today.
He also said that the state government had appointed two legal experts to look into the matter – constitutional expert Prof Dr Aziz Bari and lawyer Datuk Param Cumaraswamy to look into the matter.
The Selangor MB was however non-committal when asked whether he would attend Mohd Khusrin's oath of loyalty ceremony in front of the Selangor Sultan tomorrow.
"I won't say anything or now ... you will see whether I will be there tomorrow or not," said Khalid.