Protect Parliament’s sanctity, compel Gov’t to reconvene the House

AN Opposition lawmaker has urged Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun to speak up and call the Government to reconvene the Parliament as soon as possible.

“The Government has allowed visitors to flock stadiums and bazaars to open, but we are yet to hear when the Parliament will be reconvened.

“Where is our Speaker’s voice, who is the person responsible to protect the sanctity of our august house and its rights to convene?” asked Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh in a statement.

After imposing the Emergency rule following a spike in the COVID-19 outbreak, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin had prorogued the Parliament citing health concerns.

However, with the Government imposing several unpopular laws using Emergency powers and reopening activities involving crowds including schools, many politicians and activists have questioned the need to suspend the Parliament during this period.

Istana Negara itself had issued a statement saying that the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Abdullah Almarhum Sultan Ahmad Shah has no objections with Parliamentary proceedings being conducted during an Emergency.

However, the Government has yet to respond to the monarch’s decree.

Touching on the matter, Yeoh said that Azhar should have a better understanding on the functions of the Dewan Rakyat, as the main place to debate and establish laws.

“When MPs have no power to debate laws proposed by the Government, it is the people who end up bearing the brunt of it.

“The best example is the RM10,000 fine on COVID-19 standard operating procedure (SOP) breach, which was implemented without Parliamentary scrutiny,” said the former deputy minister.

Yeoh then urged Azhar to uphold the sanctity of the House and compel the Government to reconvene the Parliament as soon as possible.

“Please restore our Parliament’s independence and MPs right to sit and debate legislations, so as to provide check and balance on our Government,” she remarked. – March 20, 2021

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