MELAKA: Melaka Umno chief Datuk Seri Ab Rauf Yusoh is now the state Speaker following a controversial state assembly proceeding where Perikatan Nasional elected representatives met among themselves.
Chief Minister Datuk Sulaiman Md Ali insisted Ab Rauf’s appointment on Monday was in accordance with House procedures and standing orders.
The Melaka state secretary and legal adviser were consulted before Perikatan representatives re-convened for a proceeding, he said.
“We followed all the requirements to elect a Speaker as Pakatan Harapan no longer commands the majority of the assembly, ” said Sulaiman.
State Perikatan assemblymen met again after Datuk Wira Omar Jaafar, the Speaker aligned to Pakatan, adjourned the assembly sine die yesterday.
Pakatan will challenge the legality of the second proceeding and the decisions made.
Melaka Opposition chief Adly Zahari said a suit would be filed to declare the subsequent proceeding as null and void, as Omar had adjourned the first proceeding to a later date.
“It’s unlawful to reconvene a proceeding without prior notice and with the absence of opposition lawmakers, ” he said.
The state assembly had a chaotic first sitting, where elected representatives from both sides of the divide exchanged heated words, which led to Omar adjourning the proceeding.
The ruckus started around 9.45am when Datuk Seri Idris Harun (BN-Sungai Udang) moved a motion to oust Omar on grounds that Pakatan no longer commands the majority.
Lawmakers then engaged in a war of words, including name calling.
Perikatan representatives later held a proceeding among themselves, chaired by Datuk Wira Ghazale Muhamad (BN-Rim).
Ab Rauf was then elected as Speaker.
Ab 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 state administration.