Hard for PKR duo to contest resignations

By Deborah Loh, The Nut Graph

It will be hard for the two former Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) assemblypersons in Perak to challenge their own pre-signed, undated resignation letters, a constitutional lawyer said today.

Jamaluddin Mat Radzi, the assemblyperson for Behrang, and Mohd Osman Mohd Jailu, the assemblyperson for Changkat Jering, can deny having sent the letters all they want, but the law's view is that they have given prior consent to the terms contained in the letter, senior lawyer Tommy Thomas told The Nut Graph.

"The law begins from the premise that as an adult, once you sign a document, even if it is undated, and you leave it in another person's care, you have signified your consent. The law assumes you had the right to say no when asked to sign it," Thomas said in a phone interview today.

"Pre-signed resignation letters are a common practice by political parties all over the world and have been used many times before. Even if the [assemblypersons] now deny quitting, the fact is they signed that letter.

Tommy Thomas
"If they try to challenge it, the law will say, who asked you to sign it in the first place? It will also be difficult for politicians to prove that they signed it under duress," Thomas said.

Thomas was asked to comment on the legality of the pre-signed resignation letters sent to the Perak state assembly speaker V Sivakumar yesterday.