KUALA LUMPUR, 10 March 2009: The High Court here today pronounced four constitutional questions to be determined by the Federal Court in the legal battle between Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin and Datuk Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir over who is the rightful Perak menteri besar.
The questions, read out by Judge Lau Bee Lan, are as follows:
>> Whether the withholding of consent to a request for the dissolution of the state legislative assembly of Perak under article 16(6), read together with article 18(2)(b) of the constitution of Perak, by his Royal Highness the Sultan of Perak is justiciable.
>> If the answer to the first question is in the affirmative, the next question is whether the withholding of consent by his Royal Highness the Sultan of Perak is lawful.
>> Whether the appointment of the new menteri besar of Perak under Article 16(2)(a), read together with article 18(2)(a) of the constitution of Perak, by his Royal Highness the Sultan of Perak is justiciable.
>> If the answer to the above question is in the affirmative, the next question is whether the new menteri besar of Perak is validly appointed.
The questions were formulated by senior federal counsel Datuk Kamaluddin Md Said for the Attorney-General’s Chambers as requested by the judge last Friday.
After the questions were pronounced, Sulaiman Abdullah, senior counsel for Mohammad Nizar, raised an objection on the ground that the questions were irrelevant to their application for judicial review before the High Court.
“The questions did not arise from the application for a declaration in the judicial review and, with respect, whatever answer the Federal Court may give, it will not be finally determinative of the issue that has arisen,” he said.
His application for a stay of the referral order to the Federal Court, pending his appeal to the Court of Appeal, was refused on the ground that the same application (for stay) had been raised and dismissed by Lau on 6 March.
On 13 Feb, Mohammad Nizar, 52, who is also Perak PAS deputy commissioner, filed for a judicial review to declare that he is the rightful menteri besar of Perak and an injunction to bar Dr Zambry from discharging his duties as the menteri besar. — Bernama