Thursday, February 5, 2009

Pakatan tries to cling on as Palace prepares to swear in new MB

WHEN it rains, they say, it pours. It rained in Perak yesterday. And it was a deluge, as drama after drama unfolded all over the state’s capital.

On one hand, Barisan Nasional confidently formed the new government with the Sultan’s blessing, and even named Pangkor assemblyman Datuk Dr Zambry Abd Kadir as its new Mentri Besar.

It has arranged for a swearing-in ceremony at Istana Iskandariah in Kuala Kangsar at 3pm today.

Yet, Pakatan Rakyat has stubbornly refused to admit defeat and will not give up its hold over Perak.

In a ridiculously-packed press conference in the evening, an indignant Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said he was still the legitimate Mentri Besar of Perak.

“We will not resign as ordered by the Sultan. We are still the legitimate government. I will go to work as usual tomorrow,’’ he said.

It was clear from conversations with all Pakatan assemblymen and aides that they would valiantly hold fast to their posts and would not go down without fighting.

Everywhere in the city yesterday night, police sirens blared. Barricades were set up to block people from crowding the streets.

Despite this however, hundreds, if not thousands, took to the streets, showing their unadulterated anger over the unexpected twist of events.

And from the look of things, the flared tempers and high emotions will not simmer down any time soon.

Ironically, when it all started over a week ago, everything was brushed aside and misconstrued indignantly as, in the words of senior exco member Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham, rumour-mongering started by the media.

Two days ago, however, reality slapped the Pakatan government hard in the face.

After Barisan claimed it had the numbers to form the Government on Wednesday, Pakatan almost seemed like it had been beaten at the defection game.

Yesterday, the Pakatan folk put on their bravest fronts and insisted that they were winners.

High-powered meetings with the top brass in Pakatan were held on one side while similar meetings were held amongst Barisan members on the other side.

At the State Secretariat building, more events unfolded.

The police and the Federal Reserve Unit cordoned off the building while State Secretary Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Hashim asked Nizar, all the state excos and their personal assistants to leave immediately and surrender their keys, both to their offices and their spanking new Toyota Camry cars.

Given the events, it should have spelled the end for the Pakatan but it did not.

Besides declaring that they were still in power, top Pakatan leaders said they would again seek an audience with Sultan Azlan Shah and plead with the latter to dissolve the state assembly.

Will the Sultan give in however, after clearly agreeing to a new Barisan government in Perak? Talk is rife that the answer would be a resounding “No”.

After a week of fierce fighting, Barisan has finally drawn the curtains close over the Pakatan government.

Sumber: TheStar Online

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