Speaker volunteers to follow up on Wee’s cabotage debate challenge to Guan Eng

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Dewan Rakyat speaker Azhar Azizan Harun has volunteered to follow up with Transport Minister Wee Ka Siong over the latter’s challenge to debate the cabotage policy with Lim Guan Eng (Pakatan Harapan-Bagan).

This comes after Lim said today that there has been no follow-up over the challenge that Wee issued in Parliament on Sept 30.

“I had immediately accepted the challenge, but until now there has been no follow-up. Did he issue an empty challenge?

“I wasn’t the one who challenged him, he was the one who challenged me, but until now there have been no developments.

“When will the debate on the cabotage policy, which is damaging the country in terms of investment, going to happen?” Lim questioned in the Dewan Rakyat today.

In response, Azhar said he remembers chairing the session when Wee challenged Lim during the question-and-answer session.

As such, he offered to follow up on the matter with Wee.

“Let me voluntarily offer myself to follow up on this issue. I will ask the minister…because I was the one chairing at the time, I remember,” Azhar said.

Jabatan Penerangan Malaysia

The debate challenge had also drawn the attention outside of Parliament, with Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) chairperson Rais Hussin criticising Wee as a “minister with an IQ of cabbage”.

“Lim is going to have this cabbage for breakfast if the debate ever happens,” Rais had said.

Wee and Lim had engaged in an argument on Sept 30 in Parliament over the cabotage policy on ships engaged in the repairs of undersea internet cables, before the debate challenge was issued.

Tech giants have written to the government multiple times to restore the Harapan-era exemption to expedite the repair of internet cables.

Wee, however, maintained his decision to reinstate the cabotage, saying it would help the local shipping industry to develop, but the tech giants raised concerns of a monopoly. – Malaysiakini