KLANG: It is still unknown if Datuk Seri Azmin Ali will sacrifice a senior position in the Cabinet to remain in Selangor.
Several people close to Azmin say there is a small possibility that he will choose to remain in Selangor even though the Mentri Besar has said he was prepared to move to Putrajaya.
Azmin was appointed as the Economic Affairs Minister in Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s newly formed Cabinet.
Azmin, who called on Dr Mahathir yesterday to discuss the scope of his appointment, told reporters after the meeting that he was willing to quit as Mentri Besar if his services was required by the Federal Government.
“If the decission has been made for me to help in the Federal Government, I will relinquish the Mentri Besar’s position,” said Azmin, who added that as of now, he was still the Mentri Besar.
He said he would confirm this after he has had an audience with Selangor Ruler Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah. According to Azmin, he would relay to Sultan Sharafuddin, the feedback from his meeting with Dr Mahathir.
He added that Dr Mahathir had explained the scope of the Cabinet portfolio as well as what was expected of him.
“He (Dr Mahathir) has also asked me to give him suggestions on efforts to plan out the strategy to uplift Malaysia’s economy,” he said.
Azmin added that the Prime Minister had opined that Selangor’s success could be a model to help other states, besides Penang and Johor, develop likewise.
He said the Economic Affairs Ministry’s challenges were great with the government needing to formulate new policies and strategies soon.
Meanwhile, a source close to the state government said Sultan Sharafuddin would probably give Azmin his blessings to take on the ministerial position if the Mentri Besar could come up with a suitable replacement.
Currently, there are three Malay males from PKR in the state executive council line-up who can take up the position but it may not be easy for them to fill Azmin’s shoes.
They are Amirudin Shari (Sungai Tua), Dr Idris Ahmad (Ijok) and Prof Dr Shaharuddin Badarudin (Seri Setia).
“This is the second term for Amirudin as an exco but he is still not experienced enough to lead the state. Dr Idris, who is a gynaecologist in private practice, has no experience in administrative work or in formulating policies.”
He added that Dr Shaharuddin, who is a former deputy vice chancellor of Universiti Selangor (Unisel), had good administrative skills but the political analyst might not have what it takes to equal Azmin as Selangor’s top executive.
“And of course there is Tanjong Sepat assemblyman Borhan Aman Shah, who is the Selangor PKR secretary. However, by-passing the three exco members and appointing him as Mentri Besar could ruffle feathers.”
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