Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s directive that federal departments and agencies in Perak should not attend meetings organised by the state government clearly runs against the spirit of our Constitution and our system of federalism.
The move reportedly was to prevent the state-elected Village Development and Security Committees (JKKKs) from gaining access to federal agencies. The federal agencies were also barred from considering the recommendations put forward by these JKKKs.
Only the federal JKKKs would be recognised. “Among the issues that required the recommendations of federal committees were scholarship applications and entries into institutes of higher learning.”
Such a directive penalises the rakyat as federal agencies are there to provide service to the people and obtain feedback from the ground. If federal agences are not present at state government meetings to listen to views from the ground, how will the federal and state governments be able to respond to the people’s needs?
Despite all the talk of the need to reform and reinvent Umno, the party and the BN have clearly learnt nothing from their by-election defeat in Kuala Terengganu.
People are simply fed up with such vindictiveness. And the BN fails to heed the message from voters.
Perak Menteri Besar Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said the directive was against the state government’s policy of having good relations with the federal government in the interests of the people.
“I am sad that such action does not respect the spirit of federalism. The state government wants to have good relations with the federal government but if this the attitude of a minister who wants to stop and cut off ties between federal and state officers I feel that is unfortunate especially for the people of Perak who gave him the mandate as a minister.”