Several Barisan Nasional backbenchers have boycotted the second day of the Terengganu state assembly sitting in a bid to force Mentri Besar Datuk Ahmad Said to step down, after three reps lodged police reports alleging they had been threatened.
The 10 disaffected assemblymen have gathered at a leading hotel here, saying they would not return to the assembly until police can assure them of their safety.
The boycott comes in the wake of speculation that a vote of no confidence would be tabled against Ahmad.
On Saturday, Ahmad had warned that any Barisan representative attempting to table such a motion against him would face disciplinary action, including expulsion.
Ahmad, who is also Terengganu Umno chief, described such a move as detrimental to the state Barisan.
On Monday, Batu Burok state assemblyman Dr Syed Azman Syed Ahmad Nawawi of PAS called on Ahmad to dissolve the state assembly and call for fresh elections.
Meanwhile, three Barisan assemblymen lodged police reports after having allegedly received death threats via SMS, Bernama reported.
Assemblymen Zakaria Abdullah (Paka) and Abdul Halim Jusoh (Permaisuri) lodged their reports at the district police headquarters here at 12:40am Tuesday, while Ajil rep Datuk Rosol Wahid lodged another at the Hulu Terengganu district police office on Kuala Berang at 12:30am.
Abdul Halim told reporters in that they received the SMSes at about 11.20pm on Monday from an individual whom they found to be someone they knew after checking the telephone number with the state government’s official diary.
They were warned in the SMS not to pursue their intention, believed to be related to the move to table the no-confidence motion against Ahmad at the current sitting of the state assembly, Bernama said.
“As a senior state government official, he should not threaten anyone, what more a state assemblyman like me. You cannot make threats against people’s lives … I don’t know why I was targeted,” he said.
Asked whether he would inform the mentri besar of the threat, he said he would not do so because he had lodged a police report.
On Tuesday morning, Rosol asked police to ensure the three asemblymen’s safety, saying the backbenchers would only return to the assembly sitting if police could give them this assurance.
Ahmad’s appointment as mentri besar has been fraught with controversy. Former mentri besar Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh, who held the post for four years, was Barisan’s first choice but he was not re-appointed due to hiccups with the Terengganu palace.
Idris later resigned as Terengganu Umno liaison chairman.
It is believed that four Barisan assemblymen from the state left for Kuala Lumpur to meet deputy Umno president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin over the “mentri besar issue.”
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SMS threats and boycott in Terengganu Barisan Nasional