PETALING JAYA: Veteran newsman Kadir Jasin’s resignation as a government spokesman was welcomed by several politicians, who also urged that action be taken against Perlis Umno leader Shahidan Kassim for remarks about royalty.
PPBM Supreme Council member Tariq Ismail noted that police reports had been lodged against Kadir for a blog article about the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, and said the law must take its course.
But he also urged that a serious view be taken about Shahidan, who had questioned a decision by the Raja of Perlis to appoint a menteri besar despite resistance from other assembly members.
Police reports have been lodged against both Kadir and Shahidan. “If the authorities want to prefer charges against Kadir for an opinion piece, then they must also charge Shahidan,” said Tariq.
“Kadir has assured the royalty that they are protected under the constitution but they must also follow whatever the constitution provides. However, as it was also pertaining to the finances of the Agong, it gets a bit tricky,” he said.
Kadir announced today that he had resigned because the blog article, although written in his personal capacity, might impinge upon the prime minister’s advisory Council of Eminent Persons. His resignation was accepted by council chairman Daim Zainuddin.
Political analyst Mohamad Agus Yusoff told FMT that “Kadir has made a good decision to resign because otherwise the good work by the council will be affected.”
He said the issue of the King remained sensitive among Malaysians and those who discussed about royalty had to face the consequences.
Former Sungai Benut MP Tawfik Ismail said that Kadir’s article, although his personal opinion, might also be construed as reflecting those of the council by virtue of his position as the council’s spokesman.
PKR’s Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi Fadzil said Kadir’s resignation was his own choice. “If his intention is to reduce the confusion and if it is good for democracy, then why not? He has the right to say what he wants.”
Shahidan had disputed the appointment of Azlan Man, who was sworn in as menteri besar before the Raja of Perlis, Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Putra Jamalullail.
Last month, the Perlis branch of the Malaysian Council of Former Elected Representatives (Mubarak) described Shahidan’s comments about the decision as being treasonous.
Perlis Mubarak deputy president Bahari Taib said Shahidan had gone overboard in several statements made in Kuala Lumpur.