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IPOH, Feb 9 - Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin will travel the length and breadth of Perak to hold a series of ceramah to convince the people he is still the legitimate menteri besar. The Pakatan Rakyat (PR) alliance has also decided against naming Sultan Azlan Shah in a legal suit it is planning, as it attempts to deflect attacks from Barisan Nasional (BN) over the question of loyalty to the state’s ruler. The plan was announced before 8,000 Pakatan Rakyat (PR) supporters at the official MB’s residence late Sunday night, where it is making its last stand against BN’s claim to power in the state.

While PR delays what must certainly be the inevitable handover of government to BN, the two coalitions are fighting a larger battle for the hearts and minds of the public. BN has tried to assert that PR are committing treason by refusing to comply with Sultan Azlan Shah’s wishes. But with its continued insistence that the mainstream media is under the control of BN, the series of public speeches by Nizar will see PR trying to make added gains in the court of public opinion which already appears to be leaning heavily in its favour.

If the night’s speeches by Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Pas president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, DAP vice president Tan Seng Giaw and Nizar are anything to go by, the roadshow will likely centre around the legitimacy of Nizar’s claim and the assertion that Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had robbed the rights of the people by masterminding a “coup d’etat.” Speaking to the multiracial, but largely Pas-supporting crowd, Nizar said the undemocratic manner in which Najib had forced the overthrow of his administration had turned Malaysia into a laughing stock.

“We will take back the right stolen by Najib Altantuya,” Nizar said of a snap poll which PR is pushing for, referring to Najib’s continued links to the murder of the Mongolian model Altantuya Shariibuu. Cries of “Allahuakbar” and “Reformasi” went up on numerous occasions as the speakers stood on a balcony with a banner hung below them. “Daulat Tuanku, Rakyat Pohon Tuanku Bubarkan Dun Perak,” it said, reflecting the wishes of those gathered to have the state assembly dissolved.


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