DAP lawmaker Lim Kit Siang has labelled today as the lowest point in the history of Malaysia’s Parliament.
The Iskandar Puteri MP, in a statement today, accused Perikatan Nasional leaders of being part of a ‘world-class joke’ by allowing the sitting to take place for only a day, which he said makes a mockery out of the concept of parliamentary oversight and scrutiny.
Lim also accused the Cabinet of not accepting the Malaysian Constitution and the doctrine of the separation of powers between the executive, Parliament, the judiciary, following their endorsement for today’s one-day sitting.
“No Cabinet which upholds Article 43(3) of the Constitution that stipulates ‘the Cabinet shall be collectively responsible to Parliament’ would do (one-day sitting).
“With the lockdown of Parliament and the suspension of parliamentary oversight and scrutiny until July, to who is the Cabinet collectively responsible to?” Lim questioned.
Today’s meeting of the 222 MPs is the Third Term of the 14th Parliament which was originally scheduled for March 9 to April 16, but was postponed and will take place today, following the Covid-19 outbreak that led the implementation of the movement control order (MCO).
The one-day sitting of Dewan Rakyat is in accordance with Article 55 (1) of the Federal Constitution stating that the Dewan shall convene no later than six months after its last meeting.
The Second Term of the 14th Parliament was adjourned on December 5 last year after 36 days of sitting since October 7, 2019.
Lim today also lamented how lawmakers should have convened much earlier to address the issues surrounding the pandemic while taking steps to revive the economy that has been severely affected.
“It is sad and tragic that Parliament is meeting just to comply with the Constitutional requirement for it to meet at least once in every six months, instead of ensuring that Malaysia has world-class governance based on robust parliamentary oversight and scrutiny of government policies to steer the country through the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic challenge,” Lim added. – MMO