Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Karpal: It's Umno which did not show respect to sultans

Tuesday, 13 May 2008
(NST) KUALA LUMPUR: Karpal Singh, member of parliament for Bukit Gelugor, said it was not he who had been disrespectful to sultans but Umno.
Debating the royal address in Parliament yesterday, he said he did not understand why he had been labelled treasonous and seditious when in 1993 Umno led a constitutional amendment to clip the powers of rulers.He said in 1984 he had highlighted in the House alleged wrongdoings by the then Tengku Mahkota of Johor.In 1987, when the Sultan of Selangor declared that no amnesty would be given to those found guilty of distributing drugs in the state, Karpal filed a case against him."Both times, no one said I was being treasonous or seditious. Now, 20 police reports have been lodged against me, including one by Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor at the behest of the prime minister."
Reiterating that he had not challenged the power of the Sultan of Perak as head of Islam and Malay customs, Kar-pal said he had only stated that the ruler had no right to direct the menteri besar to withdraw the transfer order given to state Religious Department director Datuk Jamry Sury. Karpal's speech did not go down well with Razali Ibra-him, member of parliament for Muar, who cited standing orders and requested the chair to stop Karpal's speech.Razali said: "He should not be allowed to go on as his statement was made without filing an emergency motion. This is not an appropriate forum to talk about it. As for the police reports, wait for the police to finish their investigations."After being advised by Deputy Speaker Datuk Ronald Kiandee, Karpal said Terengganu state exco member Da-tuk Rosol Wahid and 22 assemblymen initially did not agree with the sultan's choice of menteri besar."Doesn't their action constitute a challenge to the sultan? Will the government take action against them? If not, doesn't this constitute double standards? Why am I being victimised?" he said.


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