What a constitutional farce – Paul Low and Abdul Wahid Omar not legally Ministers and Waytha, Loga and Ahmad Bashah not legally Deputy Ministers as they have not been sworn in as Senators

It is neither a good omen nor a good start for Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s post-13GE Cabinet.

Already Najib’s new Cabinet labours under a cloud of legitimacy for the simple reason that Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s Prime Ministership is under a cloud of legitimacy – not only because Najib and Barisan Nasional got 47% popular vote as compared to Anwar Ibrahim and Pakatan Rakyat’s 51% popular vote, but also because the 13GE was the most unfair and dirtiest general elections in the nation’s history.

If the 13GE had been clean, free and fair, with a level playing field for both coalitions, Anwar and PR would not only have an increased popular vote over 60 per cent or even exceeding 65 per cent, but would also have won a majority of the 222 parliamentary seats in the country.

Now, Najib’s post-13GE Cabinet has also become a farce and even a joke as it has two illegal Ministers and three illegal Deputy Ministers although they have gone through an unlawful oath-taking ceremony before the Yang di Pertuan Agong yesterday.

It is sad and shocking that the Prime Minister’s Department and the various government departments involved have become so careless, negligent and remiss that the fullest compliance with the proper laws, regulations, proprieties and protocols have been ignored or even violated – which should never have happened in a 56-year-old parliamentary democracy under six Prime Ministers.

Even the Transparency International-Malaysia Election Integrity Pledge signed by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Feb. 20 to comply and observe four principles of good governance had been disregarded, the four principles being:

  • Truth, integrity, ethical conduct and accountability, including not accepting or giving bribes or being involved in corrupt practices in any way;

  • Upholding and giving priority to the interests of the rakyat as a whole;

  • Good governance and transparency; and

  • Compliance with all the applicable laws and regulations of Malaysia.

It cannot be more ironical that Paul Low, President of TI-M who witnessed Najib’s signing of the Election Integrity Pledge is himself party to the violation of the Pledge on his appointment as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.

Yesterday, after the swearing-in ceremony for Ministers and Deputy Ministers before the Yang di Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah at Istana Negara, Najib convened a two-hour Cabinet session at the Cabinet Room in Putrajaya.

However, a dark cloud hanged over both proceedings – as up to the present moment, Datuk Paul Low and Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar (both Prime Minister’s Department) are not legally Ministers and Waytha Moorthy (PM’s Office), Dr. J. Loga Bala Mohan (Federal Territories) and Datuk Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah (Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism) are not legally Deputy Ministers as they have not been sworn in as Senators.

Was the two-hour first Cabinet meeting yesterday tainted by illegality because of the attendance of two illegal Ministers, Paul Low and Abdul Wahid.

Today, Paul Low is already giving interviews as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, which he is not entitled to, as his Ministerial appointment can only take effect when he is sworn in as Senator – which is very clear from Article 43 (1) (b) in the case of Ministers and Article 43A(1) in the case of Deputy Ministers.

I am given to understand that up to now, there has been no swearing in of the five for them to take up the two Ministerial and three Deputy Ministerial appointments.

Is there going to be a “rushed” midnight swearing-in of the five as Senators?

Najib should explain how such a glaring breach of the Constitution and the law as well as causing embarrassment to the Yang di Pertuan Agong in producing such a farce of Cabinet-making could happen.

  1. #1 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Friday, 17 May 2013 - 8:28 pm

    Wow! I am beginning to hear a number of Malaysians are taking up Zahid’s suggestion to migrate.

    1) They are taking along their RMmillions to their new host.
    2) They are taking their talents, entrepreneurial skills with them. And they don’t want Talent Scout Corporation to scout them; so they are not leaving any address behind.
    3) they are bringing along their bright, romising young children with them – so, Zahid, your children can still top your schools with no competition. Give yourself as many A’s as you want, if that makes you happy. After all, the world knows your schools are not even listed in the top 400 good schools in the world.

    So, Zahid, you see what an a donkey-ass you have made of yourself.

  2. #2 by Bigjoe on Friday, 17 May 2013 - 8:58 pm

    UMNO Apa pun Boleh, while for he opposition, Semua Betul PUN MESTI KALAH..

  3. #3 by bruno on Friday, 17 May 2013 - 9:07 pm

    The most noticable ones in Najib’s backdoor appointees is that rat Warthamoorthy.This traitor was already bought by Umno before he announced his coming home in UK,the country which offered him political asylum.Why PR do not have a plan ready to neutralise this rat,to make him look like a vermint that Umno will say to him “keep whatever money is already in the bank and forget we ever had a deal”.

  4. #4 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Friday, 17 May 2013 - 9:45 pm

    Good grief!

    I thought that is 101 in Public Law!

    It is ok if the man on the street forgets or is unaware but the AG???? And the PM????

    No wonder cock-a-doodle-do, anything can do when BN rules the roost.

  5. #5 by good coolie on Friday, 17 May 2013 - 11:10 pm

    Which alphabet soup efficiency do the illegal-Ministers’ appointment come under? I am sure the PM can come out with an acronym or two, with the help of his legion of advisers.

    Another way is to legitimise these appointments by the retrospective appointment of Senators. Another constitutional amendment is all that is necessary to undo this snafu ( it is too impolite to say what this acronym stands for).

  6. #6 by raven77 on Saturday, 18 May 2013 - 12:07 am

    And this government is illegitimate anyway….

  7. #7 by raven77 on Saturday, 18 May 2013 - 12:10 am

    Btw…doesnt the Agong have is own set of legal advisers to make certain he doesnt become a party to legal cock ups like this….

  8. #8 by Noble House on Saturday, 18 May 2013 - 4:37 am

    Even His Majesty the DYMM YDP Agong is not spared from UMNO idiocracy!

  9. #9 by Loh on Saturday, 18 May 2013 - 1:31 pm

    Najib is trying to create a first. His father started to rule Alliance as if MCA and MIC never existed. Najib now leaves only half a post, concurrently held by kerisman for MCA. It seems that the next MCA party election will see people trying hard to put one person as minister. Isn’t it too high a price to pay to have Chinese community equate to half a minister,MCA?. But the MCA President hopeful cares only for himself. He should just offer himself by giving the excuse cited by his Johor state assemblyman Tee.

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