I was at the Hormati Suara Rakyat public rally held at Kelana Jaya stadium last night. I was impressed that the civil society organisations took their own initiative to organise this event and that about 500 people turned up, braving the heavy rain and thunderstorm.
You can follow my twitter at http://www.twitter.com/teresakok for updates on today’s Dewan Negeri Selangor proceedings.
Zaidatul Syreen Abdul Rashid
Jan 23, 11
Tomorrow’s assembly sitting ‘historic’
The state assembly sitting is being convened to deliberate on amendments to the state constitution following a controversial appointment by the BN-led federal government of one Mohd Khusrin Munawi as the Selangor government secretary.
The state government has argued that it had been marginalised from the decision to appoint Khusrin, who as director of the Selangor religious department Jais, had been seen as a thorn in the side of the Pakatan-led government.
Following assertions that the appointment of Khusrin was done according to constitutional provisions, the Selangor government moved to amend the state charter to allow the return of greater powers to the menteri besar and sultan over the appointment of senior state officers.
At the rally today, the menteri besar’s political secretary Faekah Husin (left) said tomorrow’s event will be a historic one which the rakyat would never forget.
“It is to correct the appointment system correctly. The appointment of the Selangor state secretary should not be hurried,” she said, adding that the right candidate for the state secretary should be based and chosen upon their capabilities rather than political allegiance.
President of Islamic group Jamaaah Islah Malaysia (JIM) Zaid Kamaruddin said today’s event was not a political stunt nor was it funded by any political party but an initiative by the Selangor rakyat themselves.
Civil society leaders called today for the rakyat to assert their rights by making their presence known at the state assembly sitting convened over amendments to the Selangor constitution.
Speaking at the ‘Hormati Suara Rakyat Selangor’ (Respect the voices of Selangor people) rally in Kelana Jaya today, former Bar Council president Ambiga Sreenevasam (right) said it is the rakyat that decided which government would lead the state.
As such, the issue of who serves as their government secretary should be as much the concern of the ordinary rakyat as it is that of the Pakatan Rakyat-led administration and Selangor Menteri Besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim.
“This is not only the rights of the Selangor rakyat but it’s the rights of all rakyat. Bersih 2,0 has often urged the rakyat to work together to continue efforts in a fair election.
“We need all the support and assistance to make Malaysia a democratic country but as highlighted earlier today, there are still a lot of matters that require our attention,” she told the crowd of 100 people.
Bersih 2.0 is the advocacy movement campaigning for free and fair elections.
Ambiga said it is important to have a strong government with transparency and integrity as it would improve the administration of this country.
Ambiga also stressed that today’s event is to ensure that the legacy left today for the next generations is the right one, in contrast to other developments such as the levelling of racial slurs, the stomping on cow-heads to protest the relocation of a Hindu temple, church- and surau-firebombings, corruption on large scale, abuse of power, the use of draconian laws, torture and deaths under police custody.
These have all left and painted a layer of negativity for the younger generations, said Ambiga.
“Is that something we can be proud of? I think we have disappointed the next generations,” she said.
Ambiga, who wore black as a sign of respect for custodial death victim M Krishnan whose cremation was held today in Kuala Lumpur, said such deaths are unnecessary.
“We need a government who are responsible for the rakyat’s well-being,” she added.
Does the rakyat condone such abuses of power, racism and corruption?
“No!” the crowd said in resounding response to her question.
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