KUALA LUMPUR, 19 Feb 2009: A majority of the Opposition Members of Parliament (MPs) walked out of the Dewan Rakyat today when Datuk Ibrahim Ali (Ind-Pasir Mas) debated the motion of thanks for the Royal address.
They did so to show their dissatisfaction over Ibrahim’s remarks about the Opposition, which caused a war of words to break out between him and the Opposition MPs.
Ibrahim had earlier poked fun at the Opposition MPs, calling them hypocrites who did not fulfill their promises when in power but were very good at slamming the government when outside the government.
When he used the words “bangsa asing” to describe people who did not know how to address Royalty properly, it got N Gobalakrishnan (PKR-Padang Serai) all riled up.
Gobalakrishnan demanded for Ibrahim to retract the words but Ibrahim refused, claiming that he was referring to non-Malaysians.
Deputy Speaker Datuk Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar tried to calm things down but was ignored by the warring parties.
When the situation got out of hand, Gobalakrishnan walked out which led to Ibrahim apologising to Dr Wan Junaidi but he claimed it was Gobalakrishnan who provoked him.
Before things could settle down, another flare up started when Khalid Abdul Samad (PAS-Shah Alam) chided Ibrahim for behaving as though he was the only one championing the rights and institution of the Malay Rulers.
During the heated exchange that ensued between them, Ibrahim flung his songkok on his table which led to Khalid also walking out of the Dewan followed by most of the other Opposition MPs present.
Ibrahim, however, drew support from the backbenchers including Datuk Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) and Datuk Mohamed Aziz (BN-Sri Gading) who praised him for his firm stand on issues concerning the institution of the monarch.
Earlier, during the same debate, Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (PKR-Permatang Pauh) said he disagreed with DAP chairperson Karpal Singh’s intention to file a civil suit against Sultan Azlan Shah of Perak, describing it as unnecessary.
Anwar said as a Malay Malaysian, he wanted the royal institution to be given its due respect and was of the opinion that the action should be taken against the Barisan Nasional (BN)-installed Perak government, which he claimed was unlawful.
He was commenting on Karpal’s statement that he would take the Sultan to court for allowing the BN to replace the DAP-PKR-PAS government in Perak following desertions by three assemblypersons from the Pakatan Rakyat. — Bernama