Another vile insult to royalty by opposition lawmakers
Opposition legislators sitting in the Perak Legislative Assembly caused a stir yesterday when they turned up for the first sitting of the assembly’s third term dressed in black instead of their usual ceremonial dress. The assembly was due to be officially opened by Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, who was making his first appearance as the Sultan of Perak.
Lawyer Lukman Sheriff Alias expressed in a Facebook posting:
“This is the problem of impudence that I mentioned recently. It’s not about exercising one’s right. You can wear anything you want or even not wearing it. But you must consider how others perceive it. And exercise this wisely. In this case the assemblymen don’t even care how the Sultan perceives this. He is apolitical. Yet they cannot show respect to his position. Since they are impudent, they shouldn’t be respected at all. They are way out of line and tak kena tempat langsung.”
Explaining their decision, Pakatan Rakyat’s state chairman Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin was reported by the Malay Mail as saying that their attire was meant as a mark of solidarity with Anwar Ibrahim, the jailed parliamentary opposition leader, and also with 13 PAS members who were recently convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for their part in a demonstration held six years ago in Kuala Kangsar.
He also claimed that they were showing solidarity with people affected by the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax.
As a result, Sultan Nazrin skipped a planned photography session with members of the House.
Menteri Besar Zambry Kadir reacted angrily to the oppositions lawmakers’ antics.
“Whatever explanation which they may give is unacceptable,” he fumed.
“Today, was the first time Tuanku robed himself in ceremonial attire, but the opposition showed absolutely no respect. This is not a matter of regulations or law. This involves respect towards the Sultan.”
“Black signifies death, sadness and mourning. I am truly disappointed. They should not have done this. There may be differences among us, but it should not lead to this. It was disrespectful towards the institution of the monarchy,” he added.
Earlier, Sultan Nazrin had expressed hope that the assembly would become the pride of the state in terms of the quality of debates and the decorum of its members, reports Astro Awani.
“The professional qualifications and wealth of experience possessed by Assemblymen can be demonstrated in their maturity and wisdom in analysing the main issues and policies rationally and in the best manner possible to avoid sensationalisation which are personal in nature,” the Sultan was quoted as saying.
Sultan Nazrin also expressed his hope that every member of the assembly would fulfil his role so as to improve the delivery system and the government service system to ensure the prosperity of the state.