KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 – PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim today sought forgiveness from the Selangor Sultan for a second time, this time over his statement pertaining to the palace’s convention on menteri besar (MB) candidates. “Referring to the statement by Datuk Mohamad Munir Bani and the Selangor Palace regarding convention, I would like to explain. “I only stated what I knew had happened, particularly during my time in the Umno-BN government, from 1982 to 1998,” Anwar said in a brief statement today.
“If there was any mistake, I seek forgiveness from the Selangor Sultan.” The Selangor Palace said today that Anwar was incorrect and had confused the public when the latter claimed Barisan Nasional (BN) had always submitted only one candidate for the Selangor MB post. Munir said in a four-page statement that BN, through the prime minister, submitted multiples names for the top post to the Sultan when the coalition ruled the state. “Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s statement is inaccurate and confuses the rakyat. What happened during the BN government’s administration was that the choices for the Selangor MB post were presented to the Selangor Sultan by the prime minister in a ceremony.
“During the ceremony, the prime minister would present the names of candidates believed to be qualified, for the Sultan’s consent. “From the list of names, the Selangor Sultan would choose one candidate to be appointed MB,” said Munir. Munir urged the PKR de facto leader not to release statements that could confuse the public and taint the Sultan’s image if he did not have the correct facts. Last Tuesday, Anwar had sought the Sultan’s forgiveness for offending him after PKR defied his decree to submit more than two names to the palace. But Anwar had insisted that his party had acted according to convention and state law in proposing only Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail for the position.
He said that Umno, too, had only presented one name for the positions of state assemblyman, parliamentarian, chief minister, menteri besar and prime minister since 1957. Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad appeared to confirm this, saying it had always been convention to submit one name to the state ruler for the post of MB. The ex-PM told reporters on September 11 that he had never submitted more than one name, and this had not been a problem with any state rulers. A new Selangor MB will be sworn in on Tuesday at 10am at Istana Alam Shah, Klang, although it is unknown who it will be. Both DAP and PKR have submitted only one candidate’s name, Dr Wan Azizah, for the top post, but PAS broke ranks when its president Datuk Abdul Hadi Awang submitted three names to the palace.