It was a chaotic first meeting of the Perak State Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, July 3. The poser was over the appointment of the House Speaker. Four names were supposed to be submitted. However, only three names were announced by the legislative assembly secretary, Kamarulariffin Hj Ayub.
Nominees for the speaker’s post came from both sides – two from Pakatan Harapan (PH) and two from the opposition (BN/Pas). Of the three only one was from PH while the remaining two were from BN/Pas.
Members of the state assembly then cast their votes. Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham, state assemblyman for Sitiawan was voted as the House Speaker while the state assemblyman for Behrang, Aminuddin Zulkifli was nominated Deputy House Speaker.
Pakatan Harapan’s missing candidate was Siti Aishah Shaik Ismail, Parti Keadilan Perak’s female youth chief. According to her Facebook entry, she was told by PH assemblymen to withdraw her candidacy and support Ngeh. She acceded knowing it was for the good of her party.
This did not go down well with former MB, Dato’ Seri DiRaja Zambry Abd Kadir, the state assemblyman for Pangkor. He questioned PH’s action.
“It’s supposed to be the beginning of a brand-new Malaysia where everything is transparent. I am puzzled why they refused to reveal the name of their second nominee?” said Zambry to the media.
Menteri Besar, Ahmad Faizal Azumu, dismissed the allegation as inconsequential since it did not affect the state assembly proceedings.
“I wish to congratulate both Ngeh and Aminuddin on their appointments. Sultan Nazrin Shah will officiate the first session of the state assembly in August 2018. We’re working hard to fulfil Pakatan Harapan’s manifesto. Our priority is the well-being of Perakeans,” Faizal told reporters.
“This is the beauty of our new government. We can suggest and nominate names but the final list will be decided collectively. Siti Aishah, the candidate in question, has a great future in politics. I’ll make sure she is placed in a position of importance to help the state,” said Faizal.