Meeting of Sabah Barisan MPs, reps put off

  • Nation
  • Friday, 20 Feb 2004


PETALING JAYA: A meeting involving all Barisan Nasional MPs as well as Sabah state assemblymen on March 3 has been postponed. 

No fresh date, however, has been fixed for the meeting, which was supposed to be held at the Nexus Karambunai Resort, 25km from Kota Kinabalu. 

The gathering had been scheduled to be held in conjunction with the planned visit to Sabah by Prime Minister and Barisan chief Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. 

Barisan sources said the MPs and Sabah representatives were supposed to be briefed by Abdullah, and many of them had expected him to speak about getting ready for the general election. 

The meeting was to have been held ahead of the new parliamentary session from March 8 to April 15 but there have been speculations that Parliament would be dissolved before the Dewan Rakyat meets. 

Backbenchers Club chairman Mohd Zin Mohamed said the Sabah gathering had to be postponed because of “logistical problems” for the 151 Barisan MPs. 

It is normal for the coalition to hold a gathering prior to a Parliament meeting, he said when contacted yesterday. 

Asked if it could have any connection with the general election, Mohd Zin, who is the MP for Shah Alam, said: “Not that I know of.” 

PAS’ Kubang Kerian MP Husam Musa, meanwhile, predicted that Parliament would be dissolved within the first week of March. 

“Logically, it will not be proper to ask the King to open the Parliament session only to dissolve it soon after.  

“I do not think the Government will wait until the meeting is over, which will be in April, and risk having more scandals revealed.” 

Although former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had dissolved Parliament in the middle of a session to call for the 1999 general election, it was during the Budget meeting, he said. 

“This is a new session,” he said, adding that he had not even submitted any question for the sittings. 

MPs are allowed to submit 10 oral and five written questions on government policies and other concerns that are to be answered by the respective ministries before each meeting. 

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