Thursday, July 29, 2021

Special sitting before Aug 1 proposed to PM, say speakers

Rais Yatim and Azhar Harun say Parliament is fully committed and ready to hold a sitting before then, as decreed by the Agong.

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The leaders of the two Houses of Parliament today said a proposal had been submitted to Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin for a special sitting to be held before Aug 1, in the wake of their audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong yesterday.

Dewan Negara president Rais Yatim and Dewan Rakyat Speaker Azhar Harun said the Agong had at the audience expressed his view that a Parliament sitting should be held before that date.

“We, along with our deputies, uphold the king’s decree and have stated the commitment and full readiness of Parliament to hold a sitting as decreed by His Majesty,” they said in a joint statement.

“The prime minister has been informed of the decree made by His Majesty at the audience, and it has been suggested to the prime minister that a special sitting be held before Aug 1, according to existing provisions of the law.”

Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah had yesterday repeated his view that a Parliament sitting should be held as quickly as possible, following an audience with Rais, Azhar and their deputies, Mohamad Ali Mohamad, Mohd Rashid Hasnon and Azalina Othman Said.

A statement issued by the palace said this was to allow the declaration of emergency and emergency ordinance to be tabled as provided for in Article 150 (3) of the Federal Constitution.

It added that the views expressed were the stand of the Agong as well as the Malay rulers in their capacity as constitutional monarchs based on the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law.

This was the second statement issued by the king on the matter. The first statement was made in the wake of a special meeting of the Malay rulers. It was followed by a separate statement by the rulers themselves, voicing support for the king’s stand.

They also said they saw no need for the emergency period to extend beyond its scheduled deadline of Aug 1.

The state of emergency was declared in January amid a spike in Covid-19 infections which also saw the enforcement of the second movement control order across large parts of the country.

Under the emergency declaration, Parliament and state assembly sittings have been suspended.

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