Selangor Has No Authority Over State Secretary’s Appointment

(Bernama) – The state civil service commissions in the federated Malay states, namely Selangor, Perak, Pahang and Negeri Sembilan, have no authority over the appointment top division civil servants as the executive power is vested with the Public Service Commission, said a lecturer.

Prof Dr Ahmad Atory Hussein of Universiti Sains Malaysia’s School of Social Sciences said it was different with the unfederated Malay states (Johor, Terengganu, Kelantan, Perlis and Kedah) where the state civil service commissions were vested with the power to appoint the state secretary, state legal adviser and state financial officer.

He said Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim should be aware of this and stop questioning the appointment of Datuk Mohamad Khusrin Munawi as the state secretary as announced by the Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Sidek Hassan recently.

“Questioning the appointment is a futile exercise as the executive rights to appoint top division officers falls under the jurisdiction of the federal government as enshrined in Federal Constitution,” Ahmad Atory told Bernama today.

He was commenting on the Selangor government’s plan to call for an emergency state assembly meeting to amend the state constitution so that it can have a say in the appointment of the state’s top three civil servants.

Ahmad Atory said the proposed amendment would worsen the legal crisis as any attempt to amend the state constitution would be void if it is against the Federal Constitution as stipulated in Article 75.

Universiti Teknologi Malaysia fellow Prof Salleh Buang said it would not be possible for the state government to amend the state constitution as a two-thirds majority or 37 votes from the state assembly was required to enable this to happen.

Currently, the opposition led state government has 35 seats in the House (14 from Parti Keadilan Rakyat, 13 from DAP and eight from PAS) while the Barisan Nasional has 21 seats.

Salleh said even if the amendment was passed by the state assembly it would not affect Mohamad Khusrin’s appointment as any amendment to the state constitution would not be retrospective in nature.

On Abdul Khalid’s decision not to allow the state secretary to attend the state executive council meeting, Salleh said it could be construed as attempts to deny Mohamad Khusrin’s rights and disregard the state constitution.