The Menteri Besar’s grounds are spurious and flawed in law as a basis for dismissal, says Gurdial S Nijar.
The Selangor Constitution states that the state ExCo members hold office at the pleasure of the Sultan: Article 53(7). What does this imply?
First, only the Sultan can dismiss the ExCo members. The MB can recommend, but the recommendation may or may not be accepted. Hence the dismissal with immediate effect is not valid in law.
Second, the dismissal has not given the affected members the right to be heard. This renders the dismissal fatal.
Third, the reason given by the MB is that “they (the six ExCo members) have a bloc to reduce the efficiency of the ExCo’. No such voting to ‘block efficiency’ has in fact occurred. In fact the ExCo members have pledged – pending the final determination of the MB’s position according to the State Constitution – to respect the Sultan’s endorsement yesterday of the MB, to act according to the state constitution, and in the meantime to proceed with their exco duties as usual.
The MB’s grounds, with respect, are spurious and are flawed in law as a basis for dismissal, in any event.
Gurdial S Nijar is a professor of law at the University of Malaya