The Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Home Minister, Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is going after the wrong target when he called on DAP leaders to cease speculating that DAP may be outlawed by the Registrar of Societies, as the speculation started from the inner sanctum of the Prime Minister’s Office when the press secretary to the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Sarifuddin raised this possibility in his political exchange with the DAP Director of Political Education and MP for Kluang, Liew Chin Tong on Thursday night.
If Tengku Sariffuddin had trespassed into Zahid’s territory and jurisdiction as the Registrar of Societies is under the Home Ministry and not the Prime Minister’s Department, he should have been censured for his statement.
But the power balance in the Najib administration has gone as askew that Zahid’s removal as DPM is more likely than the censure of the press secretary to the Prime Minister, so long as Najib is the Prime Minister.
This was confirmed within hours of Zahid’s call as Tengku Sariffuddin issued another statement which clearly showed that there are two power centres in the Najib adminstration on the issue of DAP’s deregistration – the power centre in the Prime Minister’s inner kitchen circle which includes non-Ministers and may even exclude Zahid although he is Deputy Prime Minister and the power centre proper in the Registry of Societies and Home Ministry which should be the rightful authorities to deal with the subject.
EVERY DOG HAS ITS DOG, SARIFFUDDIN
But everybody knows which power centre is more powerful, and although the Home Minister and the Registrar of Societies can object to any unlawful interference with their proper jurisdictions, there are too many recent examples of the price of such moral, political and civil service rectitude and uprightness – Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin removed as Deputy Prime Minister; Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal removed as Minister for Rural and National Development; and the fate of Tan Sri Gani Patail, Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz and Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed, who were respectively the Attorney-General, Bank Negara Governor and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Chief Commissioner who had not fully toed Najib’s line in investigations on the 1MDB scandal, especially when there was a Special Task Force of the four Tan Sris in 2015 investigating the 1MDB scandal.
Tengku Sariffuddin reminds me of a political secretary to the Prime Minister in a former era who was so powerful that he could publicly humiliate very senior Ministers, and it would be beneficial to Tengku Sariffuddin to ponder the sorry end of such hubris and lack of humility!
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should not beat around the bush or hide behind the press secretary or a phalanx of overly-paid hack propagandists and publicists.
If my political retirement is the condition for the end of the UMNO/BN conspiracy to deregister DAP, say so, and I will give it consideration.