Go back to the people, says senate head

(The Star) – The political situation in Perak has reached a stage where it may be time to go back to the people, said Dewan Negara president Tan Sri Dr Abdul Hamid Pawanteh.

Dr Abdul Hamid, who has been observing the development in Perak with concern, said ad hoc actions on the part of individuals and political parties in Perak had not solved the impasse.

“Rightly or wrongly, the series of ad hoc actions have only made things more complex and convoluted. The best thing is for the powers-that-be to decide on the best course of action under the circumstances,” he said.

He said that in a democracy, when the arithmetic shows that one has the majority, then the problem is solved.

“In this case, the arithmetic is right but the problem is still there. Either you go on like this till the next general election or you go back to the people,” he added.

“The application of individual and specific provisions, be it under the Perak Constitution, the Standing Orders or the Federal laws, have not brought about a solution.

“That is why I think it is time to address the fundamental issue. Maybe it is time to go back to the people.”

The Senate president pointed out that all kinds of options had been exercised but had not worked. He said these included Legislative Assembly Speaker V. Sivakumar applying his powers, the Sultan exercising his prerogative and the three independent assemblymen aligning themselves to the Barisan.

He said the Senate would swear in six new Senators today but Perak to date had not been able to nominate anyone for the Senate because of the political impasse.