Termination of Bersatu quintet invalid, says Haniff Khatri

KUALA LUMPUR (May 29): The termination of former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, his son Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir, and three others from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia effective yesterday were invalid, said a lawyer.

This follows the party organising secretary not possessing any executive power to make the arbitrary decision or deal personally with matters relating to the party constitution.

This claim was made by lawyer Mohd Haniff Khatri Abdulla, who is known to act for Mahathir in several cases, in a posting made last night.

"The letter signed by Captain (Rtd) Muhammad Suhaimi Yahya as the party organising secretary is not valid as his post is not recognised or defined in Bersatu's constitution.

"Suhaimi as the organising secretary does not possess any executive power to make a decision or deal personally with matters concerning the party constitution as he did with the issuance of the letter yesterday. Following this, the termination letter is not valid and cannot be enforced," opined Haniff in the posting.

The lawyer further claimed that Suhaimi had failed and acted negligently in not relating the actual facts clearly as to the reason for the termination and under whose directive he was acting and whether the person who gave the termination order has the powers to give such orders.

He cited Article 10.2.2 and 10.2.3 of Bersatu's constitution, which he said cannot be used automatically by Suhaimi as the organising secretary.

"Following this, further legal action can be taken after consulting with Mahathir and the four others in the soonest time," he cautioned, adding that further reasons to challenge which he described as illegal and null and void would be provided later.

Haniff emphasised that nowhere in the "termination" letter dated yesterday explained the membership or the posts held by the five of them.

Besides Mahathir and Mukhriz, the others that were issued their marching orders were former education minister Dr Maszlee Malik, former youth and sports minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman and former deputy finance minister Datuk Amiruddin Hamzah.
In the letter, Suhaimi said the decision was made because Mahathir, the Langkawi member of Parliament, had joined and sat with the opposition block when Parliament was convened for a one-day sitting last Monday.

He also said that the former premier had informed the party that his seat in Parliament would be with the block that does not support the Perikatan Nasional government led by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also the president and acting chairman of Bersatu.

"Hence, please be informed that in accordance to Clause 10.2.2 and 10.2.3 of Bersatu's constitution, Tun's (Mahathir) membership in Bersatu is stopped with immediate effect," he said.

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