KUALA LUMPUR: The appointment of Azhar Azizan @ Harun, a lawyer who is capable of acting as both counsel and solicitor, as the new Election Commission (EC) chairman contravenes Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) election manifesto.
Rembau member of parliament Khairy Jamaluddin said the appointment of Azhar, who is also known as Art Harun, was not referred to Parliament to be endorsed as pledged in PH’s manifesto.
The former Umno Youth chief said it proved that there was a lack of commitment to executing institutional reforms as promised by PH.
Khairy praised Art Harun as a qualified and credible candidate, who was able of strengthening the system and would ensure free and fair elections.
But, said he did not agree with the method used in carrying out the appointment.
Khairy said Art Harun should put his appointment on hold to show his commitment to institutional reform.
“Although Art Harun’s appointment was consented to by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V, he should not shoulder the responsibility until he receives the official consent of Parliament.
“In the hype/excitement of welcoming a progressive person for an important position, let us not forget that the way of appointment itself reflects (negatively) on the new government’s commitment towards institutional reform,” he said.
“You cannot start the institutional reform process through a appointment method which is completely against the reforms once promised,” he said in a Twitter post, today.
Earlier the Chief Secretary to the Government, Datuk Seri Dr Ismail Bakar, had announced the appointment of Art Harun as the new EC chairman, replacing Tan Sri Mohd Hashim Abdullah.
“Parliament will reopen on Oct 15. Why couldn’t they delay the appointment a little longer until the the decision is endorsed by Parliament?
“Even without the new EC chairman, I’m sure the Port Dickson by-election will still go on fine. So don’t use that as an excuse.”
PH’s election manifesto stated that the appointment of any EC members must go through Parliament’s process of approval and that the EC would be placed directly under Parliament.
(File pic) Rembau member of parliament Khairy Jamaluddin said the appointment of Azhar, who is also known as Art Harun, was not referred to Parliament to be endorsed as pledged in PH’s manifesto. (NSTP / MOHD YUSNI ARIFFIN)
© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd