JOHOR BAHRU: The Sultan of Johor has warned that he would dissolve the Johor state legislative assembly if politicking continues, more than three months after Perikatan Nasional (PN) ousted Pakatan Harapan (PH) and took over the state administration.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday (Jun 3), Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar expressed his disappointment with the prolonged politicking in the southern state, with “power-hungry politicians” grabbing positions for their self-interests.
“They clearly have no regard for the hardships being faced by the rakyat (people) now and seem bent on exacerbating the sufferings of the people.
“I cannot stand seeing my rakyat suffer. I will not allow my state to be in disarray,” he wrote.
The sultan said he has taken an oath to protect and safeguard the well-being of his subjects at all times.
“If the politicking goes on, I will immediately dissolve the Johor state legislative assembly.
“I will give the people the opportunity (to) elect new political leaders to represent their interests, and I hope, this time, the rakyat will choose leaders who really want to serve the people and the state, not just for their respective political parties or themselves,” he said.
The fall of the PH state government in Johor in late February was triggered by the collapse of the PH government in Putrajaya.
After meeting the state assemblymen, Sultan Ibrahim announced that a new coalition, comprising lawmakers from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) and Barisan Nasional (BN), had the majority to form a new state government.
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Subsequently, BN Johor chief Hasni Mohammad, who is from United Malays National Organisation, replaced Dr Sahruddin Jamal from Bersatu to be the new chief minister.
Out of the 56 seats in the state assembly, PN holds 29 seats while PH has 27 seats.
In the first state assembly after the change of state government on May 14, the sultan had warned the politicians not to spread a “disunity virus” by politicking.
He noted that there were power grabs, which threatened the political stability and economic development of the state, according to Bernama.
With speculation rife that PH is trying to wrest power back from PN at the federal level, a former PH minister who holds a parliamentary seat and a state seat in Johor said earlier that the wave of change could start in the southern state.
“I am optimistic … Why not we start with Johor as a state where there will be a 7.3 Richter scale quake to shake up Malaysian politics.
“Anything can happen in Johor and we are working towards that direction, wait and see what will happen in Johor … from the Tebrau Strait we will bring a big change to Putrajaya,” Mr Salahuddin Ayub of Parti Amanah Negara said in a Facebook live dialogue last Saturday.
Following the sultan’s Facebook post, PH’s Johor chapter said on Wednesday that it respects his warning to the assemblymen.
“Johor PH also expressed its commitment to the practice of parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy, which is the backbone of our state and country," it said in a statement, according to Malay Mail.
“Johor PH will always adhere to these principles in dealing with any issues and the current political situation.”