Five-hour wait for Raja Nazrin

(The Star) IPOH: Thanks to the chaotic scene at the Perak state assembly, the Raja Muda of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah had to wait five hours before he could officially open the meeting at 3.15pm.

Raja Dr Nazrin, who was accompanied by his consort Raja Puan Besar Perak Tuanku Zara Salim, arrived at the Perak Darul Ridzuan building at 9.20am yesterday to perform the opening ceremony but waited in the royal holding room after a commotion broke out involving Pakatan Rakyat and Barisan Nasional assemblymen.

When the royal couple walked in, Pakatan assemblymen stationed themselves in the middle of the hall before them as a sign of protest.

As Raja Dr Nazrin Shah took his seat, former mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin requested leave to address him.

The Raja Muda then summoned Nizar and Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham (DAP – Setiawan) to approach him on the royal dais.

Leaning towards them, the Raja Muda of Perak was heard whispering to the two that he did not want to interfere in the political dispute.

“I just want to give my speech. Respect my speech when I am giving it, you understand? If you want to work with me in the future, respect my speech. Tell them that,” murmured Raja Dr Nazrin Shah.

Bowing, both Nizar and Ngeh returned to speak briefly to the Pakatan assemblymen, who then resumed their seats for the royal address.

The Raja Muda left at 3.50pm after delivering his speech. He did not touch on the chaotic situation in the House.

Earlier, Sivakumar was taken out by several people who had entered the House before former Sungkai assemblyman, Datuk R. Ganesan, who was elected Speaker by the Barisan assemblymen and three Independent assemblymen, was escorted to the Speaker’s Chair.

In his 20-minute speech, Raja Dr Nazrin touched on the economy, administration and development of the state.

He advised the state administration machinery to be brave and open in exploring new ideas and innovation in order to optimise productivity and cut costs.

The Raja Muda also viewed seriously incidents of crime, drug addiction and the Mat Rempit culture which was becoming more prevalent now.

“The firm action taken by the authorities in enforcing the laws should be supported and the principle of the rule of law should be held dear,” he said.