MELAKA: Melaka Umno chief Datuk Seri Ab Rauf Yusoh is the new Legislative Assembly Speaker, says Chief Minister Datuk Sulaiman Md Ali.
He said Rauf's appointment is according to the rules of procedure and standing orders of the assembly.
Sulaiman said the Melaka state secretary and legal advisor were consulted before Perikatan Nasional reconvened for a proceeding after Datuk Wira Omar Jaafar, the Speaker aligned to Melaka Pakatan Harapan had adjourned the assembly on Monday (May 11), sine die.
"We have adhered to all the requirements to elect a Speaker as Pakatan no longer commands the majority support of the assembly," he said.
However, Pakatan is challenging the move following a chaotic start of the assembly.
Melaka Opposition chief Adly Zahari said the case will be brought to court to declare the appointment as null and void.
"It's unlawful to reconvene a proceeding without prior notice and with the absence of Opposition lawmakers," he said.
The state assembly was reconvened shortly after jibes were exchanged and assembly standing order books allegedly were thrown around by Perikatan lawmakers, which led to the sitting adjourned by Omar.
The ruckus started around 9.45am when Datuk Seri Idris Harun (BN-Sungai Udang) moved a motion to oust Omar on the grounds that Pakatan no longer commands the majority.
Lawmakers from both the political divide were then engaged in verbal abuse including name callings.
Rauf was elected as Speaker in a new session chaired by Datuk Wira Ghazale Muhamad (BN-Rim).
Rauf, 59, received the support of 16 of the 17 state assemblymen from the ruling state government without the presence of Opposition lawmakers.
Melaka has 28 lawmakers with 17 on Perikatan's side following a political turmoil on March 2 that caused Pakatan to lose the administration of the state.