AG just doing his job, did not breach confidentiality, Ali Biju tells PH

Datuk Ali Biju (file photo)

KUCHING, June 28: Deputy Energy and Natural Resources Minister Datuk Ali Biju has rebuked Pakatan Harapan (PH) lawmakers for asserting that Attorney-General (AG) Tan Sri Idrus Harun has breached the law for saying the King must act on the advice of the Cabinet in exercising his power to convene Parliament, as provided for by the Federal Constitution.

Instead, he called on PH lawmakers to work with the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government to combat Covid-19 instead of calling for Idrus to resign.

Ali who is also Saratok MP opined Idrus was just doing his job.

“The AG in his capacity as the chief lawyer of the government not only has a moral duty but more importantly the public duty to clarify and explain to the Malaysian public the correct interpretation of the constitution and what constitutional monarchy means within the context of the Federal Constitution.

“AG clearly stated that he was responding to various views, statements and opinions on the role of the monarch within the Federal Constitution ciriculating in the public which were misleading.

“The AG acted well within his role to bring clarity to the matter and for this, he should be commended,” he said in a press statement today.

Ali who is also a member of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) said the allegation made by PH lawmakers towards the AG was inaccurate.

Meanwhile, the PH presidential council in a statement yesterday called for Idrus to resign saying the latter’s public statement about the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s power to reconvene Parliament was a breach of confidentiality.

The council said the AG has gone against normal practice, as according to Article 145(2) of the Federal Constitution, he is obliged to advise the King, Cabinet or ministers on any legal matters.

“It is clear that the AG should give his views directly to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and keep them confidential, and not announce them to the public as he had done.

“This statement is a form of ‘breach of confidentiality’ between a lawyer and client,” said the council in a statement signed by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Parti Amanah Negara chief Mohamad Sabu and Democratic Action Party (DAP) secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.

Last Friday, Idrus issued a statement saying that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah must act on the advice of the Cabinet in exercising his power to convene Parliament, as provided for by the Federal Constitution, and that the Emergency Ordinance does not nullify this requirement. — DayakDaily