Parliament To Sit Under PN For 1 Day Only Where No Questions Or Motions Will Be Accepted

The first Parliamentary sitting was scheduled to last for 15 days, from 18 May to 23 June.

Cover image via Twitter @limkitsiang

As scheduled, the Dewan Rakyat will sit for its third session on 18 May.

However, the first sitting of the year will last for a single day.

The date was initially announced on 4 March by Speaker Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof after the first parliamentary sitting of the year was postponed due to the formation of a new Perikatan Nasional ruling coalition that came to power after the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan administration.

The first Parliamentary sitting was scheduled to last for 15 days, from 18 May to 23 June.

However, Dewan Rakyat secretary Riduan Rahmat has now issued a notice via email to the lawmakers, informing them about the one-day sitting when the Dewan Rakyat convenes on 18 May.

"Following the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO), the Dewan Rakyat would convene to discuss government Bills and business only," the notice read, as reported by Malaysiakini.

In the one-day sitting, no questions or motions will be accepted

The Parliament will open at 10am with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA) delivering the Royal Address and end with discussions on only government bills and business related to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

"There will be no oral question sessions, written questions, motions, and special chambers," Riduan said.

The second Parliamentary sitting of the year is scheduled for 13 July.

According to a notice issued on the official website, it will last for 25 days until 27 August.

Fahmi Fadzil, who is the Lembah Pantai MP, said that the sitting should at least be for two days for a more substantive discussion on COVID-19

"I'm disappointed that it's this short. We suggested other means in order to enable MPs to continue the sitting," Fahmi, who is the PKR communications director, was quoted as saying by The Star Online.

On the other hand, Iskandar Puteri MP Lim Kit Siang has called the decision for a one-day sitting "most unacceptable", claiming that it makes "a farce of Parliament".

The DAP leader said that the one-day sitting of Parliament on 18 May must be reconsidered by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin as Parliament should not be shunted off, emasculated, or marginalised.

"It must play a major role in galvanising national unity and solidarity during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as providing scrutiny to ensure the most effective strategy to overcome COVID-19 crisis and the best exit plan for economic recovery," the veteran politician said in a statement today, 18 April.

Meanwhile, Seputeh MP Teresa Kok highlighted how other democracies have convened normal parliamentary sessions with South Korea holding a general election under severe COVID-19 restrictions

"The Perikatan Nasional government has no legitimate basis to limit this session of Parliament to only one day despite the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown," Teresa said in a statement.

"We have seen lately that many democracies, such as the UK and the US, have convened normal parliamentary sessions. Better still, South Korea even held a general election under severe pandemic restrictions," she said, adding that the reason cited by Riduan is "ludicrous and holds no water".

Earlier this month, it was announced that all PN MPs who are not in the Cabinet will be given a position in government-linked companies (GLCs). The announcement has left political analysts shocked:

On 14 April, the US Justice Department announced it had sent back RM1.29 billion in funds stolen in the 1MDB corruption scandal:

On Friday, 17 April, Bursa's chairperson Shireen Ann Zaharah Muhiudeen was removed from her post due to "governance issues" and Abdul Wahid Omar was appointment as Bursa's new chairman:

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