Speaker Azhar: 39 MPs not vaccinated

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Dewan Rakyat Speaker Azhar Azizan Harun has said that 35 MPs have only received one dose of Covid-19 vaccine, while four have not received even their first jab for undisclosed reasons.

He added that they were still allowed to attend the Dewan Rakyat sittings.

“All MPs are allowed to come to Parliament even if they are not vaccinated, but we advise those who are not vaccinated to be careful because we cannot stop them from performing their duties under the federal constitution,” he said in a press conference today.

Azhar said he had previously held discussions with national Covid-19 immunisation programme co-ordinating minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who agreed that all parliamentary staff should be vaccinated, and so far, 90% of them had received both shots.

Azhar said Parliament had set certain ‘house rules’, among which was to ensure that every individual who came to Parliament, including contractors, ministry staff and ministerial escort officers had been vaccinated.

“If they are not vaccinated, we will not allow them to enter,” he said.

TMI

As a security measure, Azhar said every individual including MPs, officers on duty, parliamentary staff, media personnel, contractors’ workers, drivers, and bodyguards would have to take a swab test.

A total of 1,008 people were screened two days ago, while all MPs were screened today.

A special session of the Dewan Rakyat will be held for five days beginning July 26, while the Dewan Negara will convene for three days beginning August 3.

Meanwhile, Azhar in a statement said that only 72 media personnel would be allowed in the Parliament building.

In addition, he said Parliament had also prepared hybrid press conference platform facilities and exclusive interactive interview sessions with MPs through Zoom.

“These virtual press conferences and interviews will provide an opportunity for all media personnel not allowed at the Parliament building to participate in all press conferences or interviews that may be held by any MP during the special session,” he said.

Azhar said Parliament would provide a special room that housed two computers and audio-visual equipment with dedicated Zoom links, and the media could contact his press secretary or the Parliament corporate communications division if they wished to hold interactive sessions with MPs.

Meanwhile, he said all important photos during the conference would be taken by officially appointed photographers.