Johor Chief Minister Osman Sapian resigned on Monday evening, April 8, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad revealed in a press conference on Tuesday.
Resignation ordered by royalty
The Johor Crown Prince revealed that his father, Johor Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar, had decreed that the state’s chief minister be changed.
This latest development has confirmed speculations that Osman had been asked to leave.
Revelation via tweet
Ismail Sultan Ibrahim wrote on Twitter that his father ordered the change of the top man in the state.
Titah utk tukar Menteri Besar dah lama. Tetapi org lain pula nak ambil kredit dan mileage, kononnya dia arahkan. Kebawah Duli Tuanku sudah meneliti untuk tukar MB sejak berbulan lalu. Jgn lupa, kuasa memilih Menteri Besar adalah hak mutlak Sultan. Cukup cukuplah politicking.
— HRH Crown Prince of Johor (@HRHJohorII) April 9, 2019
He wrote: “His Majesty has looked into changing the chief minister since months ago. Don’t forget, the power to appoint the chief minister is the sultan’s absolute right.”
Ismail Sultan Ibrahim also inserted a cryptic message inside the tweet.
The crown prince claimed another person was appearing to be the one giving orders to change the chief minister and eager to “claim credit and mileage”.
He did not name the individual.
The crown prince then wrote in another tweet that he hoped the new chief minister would not be a mere “yes-man” to Putrajaya.
On Monday, news of a meeting between Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and Osman fuelled speculation that the chief of Johor was on his way out.
But Osman’s office denied the meeting was about the resignation, but that it was for the Singapore-Malaysia Leaders’ Retreat.
Malaysian media pointed out on Tuesday that Osman was absent from the retreat.
A seat was reserved for Johor Health, Environment and Agriculture Committee chairman Sahruddin Jamal.
Sahruddin and Johor Youth, Sports and Culture Committee chairman Mohd Khuzzan Abu Bakar are rumoured to be in the running for the chief minister’s post.