ALOR SETAR: The highly anticipated meeting between the Kedah Regency Council and Barisan Nasional assemblymen ended with no decision, raising questions over where the Kedah political crisis is heading.
The 15 Opposition members of the assembly have now been summoned to meet the council today, suggesting that yesterday’s meeting did not produce the desired result for those opposing Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir’s leadership.
Twenty Barisan assemblymen – 18 from Umno and two from MCA – took turns to meet the council for over three hours at Wisma Darul Aman.
Mukhriz was also present, but it is learnt that he did not meet with the council.
Sources said not all the Umno assemblymen were in tune with what the Barisan leadership had asked of them – to reject Mukhriz as the Mentri Besar.
It is learnt that one or two Umno representatives had not spoken in support of the plan to oust Mukhriz.
This came after their meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on Jan 24, in which all the Umno assemblymen had supposedly rejected Mukhriz.
Kedah Umno deputy liaison chief Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah, who is also Bakar Bata state assemblyman, told the media he merely replied to questions posed by the council members and was not told of any decision.
“They asked two or three questions. I don’t know of any outcome,” he said, declining to comment further as he left Wisma Darul Aman at around 5.50pm.
Guar Chempedak assemblyman Datuk Ku Abd Rahman Ku Ismail said he was unsure how long the issue would drag.
“I want to go home and rest, I don’t know how long this issue will drag on. No comment ... I cannot comment, we’ll meet next time,” he was quoted as saying by Bernama.
Some political observers have described the summoning of the opposition assemblymen by the council as “a step too far”.
They felt that the council could have just accepted the statutory declarations signed by most of the Umno representatives.
“Has the Regency Council gone too far by now ordering the Opposition reps to come before them as well?
“This is basically a Barisan and Umno problem, not a DAP-PAS issue,’’ said an observer.
As news of the new call-up by the council emerged, Parti Amanah Negara Kedah chairman Dr Ismail Salleh said Pakatan Harapan leaders would meet “to synchronise our actions”.
The opposition in Kedah includes eight representatives from PAS, four from PKR, two from DAP and one from Amanah.
Ahmad Bashah, who was said to be the top choice to replace Mukhriz, left at about 6pm.
He had earlier arranged to have 40 packets of nasi kandar and four dozen bottles of mineral water delivered to the media waiting outside the building.
Council chairman Tunku Temenggong Tan Sri Tunku Sallehuddin Ibni Almarhum Sultan Badlishah left at 5.25pm.
He was accompanied to his car by a solemn-looking Mukhriz, who left via the side gate to avoid the media.
Tengku Panglima Besar Datuk Seri Tunku Puteri Intan Safinaz and her convoy were seen leaving at 6.20pm.
At press time, Mukhriz was addressing a large crowd at Stadium Darulaman. He was accompanied by PAS MP for Pokok Sena Datuk Mahfuz Omar and state exco man Datuk Aminuddin Omar, among others.