He is under siege from his own colleagues in Pakatan Rakyat, in particular over the water woes in Selangor, but Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim remains defiant, fending off calls for him to step down.
PETALING JAYA: Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim is facing mounting pressure from his Pakatan Rakyat colleagues to step down from his job but he remains unfazed.
After his humiliating defeat in PKR division polls, Khalid has come under siege for a host of other contentious issues, including the unresolved matter of seized Bibles and the return of water woes in the state.
Khalid has responded by slamming his critics, including DAP and PKR leaders who had demanded for his resignation.
He stressed that even if he were to lose in the PKR deputy presidential race, it would not mean that he should step down as the mentri besar.
“There was never a clause to say if you fail in your party elections, you have to resign as mentri besar.
“For example, if you lose as MP, then you cannot be a minister. That is okay. But if you are an MP, you remain as an MP until the next general election,” he said.
Khalid also said that the PKR election system was flawed, as there was a blackout during the Kuala Selangor votes tallying process, which resulted in him losing to former Kapar MP S. Manikavasagam.
“I joined PKR as I wanted to be part of a party that champions the rights of the people in line with the democratic values.
“But sadly, I see some flaws, especially in the process of counting votes and this is a serious issue for a party like PKR.”
In an immediate response, PKR adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the post of mentri besar was not “personal property”.
In a statement urging all state assemblymen and party leaders to respect the rules and conduct related to the matter, he said:
“The position of the mentri besar is not the personal agenda nor property of any individual but is the result of a decision of PKR’s and Pakatan Rakyat, with the blessings of the Sultan.”
Khalid, who is in a three-way fight for the deputy presidency against incumbent Azmin Ali and secretary-general Datuk Saiffudin Nasution, said a thorough investigation was needed to find out if there were elements of sabotage in the electoral process.
Manikavasagam, who was suspended but reinstated recently, secured 701 votes against Khalid’s 515 votes to win the division with his team winning key posts as well and the Youth and Wanita wings.
PKR election committee chairman Datuk Johari Abdul confirmed that there was a power outage during the vote tallying process but denied there was any tampering of votes.
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