Tuesday December 14, 2004

Datuk Ruslin Hasan is new KL mayor

By Maria J. Dass

KUALA LUMPUR: Kol (Rtd) Datuk Mohmad Shaid Mohd Taufek ended his tenure as the mayor of Kuala Lumpur on Monday after three years at the helm.
However, the termination of his services was unceremonious as Mohmad Shaid found out about it from the press -- several hours after the Federal Territories Ministry issued a statement announcing City Hall director-general Datuk Ruslin Hasan as his successor.
"This is the first time I am hearing of it. I don't know. I have not been told anything yet," Mohmad Shaid told reporters at a press conference at 4pm to announce City Hall's 2005 Budget.
"So far I have not received any formal notification or letter from the ministry or the government informing me of a contract extension or termination.
"I have been away all day for a meeting with the Housing and Local Government Ministry and only just returned to the office."
Mohmad Shaid's position has been a matter of intense speculation as talks of lobbying and political manouvering were rife.
This was compounded when Mohmad Shaid did not receive his renewal letter, as well as talk of administrative restructuring of City Hall.
The Federal Territories Ministry statement, issued at about noon, said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Syed Putra Jamalullail had consented to the appointment of Ruslin, who is the first City Hall officer to be elevated to Mayor.
Mohmad Shaid, 57, was appointed mayor on Dec 14, 2001, taking over from Tan Sri Kamaruzzaman Shariff.
His annual contract expires on Dec 13.
Mohmad Shaid said if news that the contract was not extended was true then "I express my thanks to all the officers and people who had worked with me and the media for their support.
"Over the last three years we have tried our best to develop Kuala Lumpur into a city to be proud of in the future.
"I feel like my achievements are like a graph chart... I just want to say that we have worked hard and achieved a little something compared to the previous years."
Asked what his plans were for the future, Mohmad Shaid said: "Rest... I have been working hard... I'm not prepared..."
Ruslin, meanwhile, is on medical leave following an eye infection.
The 54-year-old was born on July 10, 1950, in Masjid Tanah, Malacca.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Anthropology from Universiti Malaya and a Masters degree in Business Administration from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
He started his career in the public service in 1974 as assistant secretary at the City Hall Secretariat and in various other departments in City Hall.
He was appointed director-general of City Hall on Oct 10, 2001.
Ruslin is vice-president of the Kuala Lumpur Football Federation, president of the Federal Territory Road Safety Council and vice-president of the Association of Statutory Bodies Malaysia.

Parent site: "Focus on Malaysia"