Any questions or clarifications on revoking the proclamation of emergency will be replied by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan on Monday.
During a special sitting of Dewan Rakyat today, Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun was firm on his decision yesterday despite repeated pressure by MPs especially from the Opposition bloc who demanded an immediate explanation.
“I have said that yesterday and I have also informed the law minister that he needs to answer all questions raised by all Honourable Members on what he said yesterday.
“He (Takiyuddin) needs to give clarifications as well as on the procedure whether it received the consent of the Agong or not…let us wait until Monday,” he said.
The issue of revoking the Emergency Ordinance was raised again in the Dewan Rakyat today when MPs in the opposition bloc repeatedly asked Takiyuddin to provide an immediate explanation without waiting for Monday as it involved public interest.
Azhar also urged all MPs to abide by the set Order Paper which encompassed a period of five days at the briefing session of the minister yesterday.
“Let us adhere to the Order Paper as it has been published earlier and the matter on the emergency on Monday…because I want to start this proceeding so that we have sufficient time to debate the matter one by one,” he said.
Earlier, several opposition MPs stood up to seek clarifications, including Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (PH-Port Dickson), who questioned whether the revocation of the Emergency Ordinance had been presented to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
“Now, when the minister announced the revocation of the Emergency Ordinance, we want to know whether it was presented to the King and received his consent? Even that the Speaker cannot agree to reply…never mind the details, I agree with the Speaker we will discuss on Monday,” said the opposition chief.
Anwar told Azhar he would be perceived as colluding with the government if he did not compel Takiyuddin to immediately reply to the points raised by the opposition bloc.
“But we want to know whether all that we have been discussing in these five days has become unlawful as the (ordinances) have already been revoked on July 21,” he said.
Anwar said Takiyuddin’s response to the situation had made him had “100% sure” that the Agong had not consented to the revocation and that the minister had misled the House if that was indeed the case.
“Speaker, do not collude with those who have misled the house from that honourable seat. That is why we are asking for just one thing.
“I am disheartened if the speaker is not willing; then we have a big problem with the speaker,” said Anwar.
Gobind Singh Deo (PH-Puchong) said the Speaker should respect the Agong or resign.
“This happened because the prime minister ran away yesterday because he was dodging the question. Now all we want is an answer from the prime minister’s floor and not the law minister’s floor,” he said.
Ramkarpal Singh (PH-Bukit Gelugor) also told Azhar to specify the standing order used to allow Takiyddin to delay his response.
Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal (Warisan-Semporna) joined in to say the announcement of the revocation should have come from Istana Negara, and not the executive in the Parliament.
“This suggests there is no separation of powers, we have no separations of powers, the Speaker has the power.
“If that’s the case then we have to correct them, because the proclamation of the Emergency was made by the executive and we have to change the Federal Constitution!” he exclaimed.
Lim Guan Eng (PH-Bagan) then asserted that Azhar, as a qualified lawyer, should know that justice delayed against those still affected by the revoked laws was equivalent to justice denied.
“We cannot wait until Monday, there is much confusion in and outside this hall. What is the state of the constitution if this is allowed?” he questioned.
Tan Sri Noh Omar (BN-Tanjong Karang) who intercepted also questioned what was his role as a member of the Special Independent Emergency Committee 2021 if the decision relating to the revocation or extension of the emergency was not discussed with him.
“If it is true the emergency has been revoked, then there is no point discussing anymore,” he said.
On Feb 9, the Prime Minister’s Office announced a list of 19 individuals appointed to the Special Independent Emergency Committee 2021 chaired by former chief justice Tun Ariffin Zakaria.
The committee set up under Section 2 of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021, has the role of advising the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on continuing with the emergency in Malaysia and its termination.
Despite being pressured to provide an immediate answer and clarification, Takiyuddin (PN-Kota Baru) insisted he would respond next Monday.
“The Dewan Rakyat Speaker has said that I can provide an explanation on this on Monday.
However, Takiyuddin’s refusal to give his response was met with further criticism by Anwar who accused the former of jumping the gun when he said Cabinet had revoked the ordinances.
Anwar said Takiyuddin should just come clean on the matter and explain what is really happening.
“Our question is very specific and yet the minister (Takiyuddin) cannot answer. Has Agong given his consent?
“If not, why can’t the government just say ‘we are in the process of revoking it and it will be presented to the Agong soon for consent’?
“If you had a slip of the tongue moment, just be frank. Why are you dancing around this? If he already has the consent from Agong, he would have proudly displayed it in the House yesterday.
However, Takiyuddin stood his ground and said he is bound by the Speaker’s ruling that he should give his answers on Monday.
“I am not running away. I won’t run away on Monday,” he said.