Excellent choice of speaker, but was due process adhered to?

Posted on July 16, 2018

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many-colours-one-dreamIMG-20180512-WA0040That seemed to be the stance of the opposition MPs in parliament today, barring KJ and Anifah, as they staged a walk out during the swearing in of the speaker of the Dewan Rakyat, Ariff Mohd Yusof.

DatoArrif2-180x180I don’t think there is anyone who disputes the credentials of this man.

We have every reason to expect to see respectability restored to parliament, overseen by him.

Opposition MPs who staged the walk out dispute that his nomination, in writing, by the government, was made by 2nd July, 2018 as asserted by the secretary of parliament.

Malaysiakini quoted Zahid as saying that they have evidence that Ariff’s name was not submitted to the parliament secretary within the 14 days as required.

Takiyuddin Hassan (PAS-Kota Bahru) raised, as reasons to suggest that Ariff’s name could not have been submitted on 2nd July, as the secretary now claims, the following :-

  • on 6th July, it was reported that former minister Rais Yatim said he was ready to take on the mantle of speaker
  • on 8th July, it was reported that Harapan secretariat Saifuddin Abdullah said the speaker candidates had been shortlisted
  • on 11th July, Sungai Petani MP Johari Abdul reportedly declined the offer to be Speaker.

Takiyuddin contends that based on this, it’s improbable that notice of Ariff’s nomination was done on 2nd July.

I have to say that he does appear to have a point here.

Malaysiakini also reports that when asked if legal action would be taken on this issue, Pengerang MP Azalina Othman Said responded that they would check with the secretary of parliament on the correctness of whether the written notification was submitted by 2nd July.

Maybe she should check Zahid’s ‘evidence’ first.

What I found strange was those MPs who staged a walkout, later walked back in to be sworn in before the speaker whose appointment they believed to be procedurally wrong!

Should they not have headed to court and commenced proceedings to get this issue cleared up?

I am all for Ariff as speaker, but I, too, want to know if the new parliament has kicked off properly.

Don’t you?