KUALA LUMPUR: Sixteen new members have been appointed to the Malaysian Youth Parliament to diversify the composition of the programme’s representatives, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin says.
The appointments were aimed at representing a more inclusive composition of the country’s youth including women and people from Sabah and Sarawak, said Khairy.
“I want them to make full use of the platform to show their potential, and as a mill to produce future leaders and sharpen their capabilities,” he said at the Parliament lobby yesterday.
The Youth Parliament for the 2017-2018 session comprises 133 representatives from all over the country.
The two-day programme, which began on Wednesday, allows representatives to take part in debates similar to discussions in Dewan Rakyat.
Khairy said the platform could voice out youth and current issues through motions tabled in the House.
“Let them voice out freely all their aspirations and any concerns pertaining to the younger generation,” he said.
He said the representatives could also air their views which will be included in the National Transformation 2050 initiative.
“The motions will allow the government to make plans that could help us when facing future challenges,” said Khairy, who is also head of Umno Youth.
He said leaders from the programme had been chosen to join political parties as their performance was being constantly monitored.
“Political parties are looking at the Youth Parliament as a testing ground and talent identification platform. We also received request from political parties to watch the proceedings. The parties are allowed to directly approach those whom they identify as having the right potential,” said Khairy.
Asked on Football Association of Malaysia president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim’s comment on Khairy’s absence at the recent FA Cup finals, the minister said: “I believe there is no benefit if I responsed to the question.”
Tunku Ismail said Khairy should have watched the “historic match” at the Shah Alam Stadium.
“When you are a minister or a politician, you should be serving the people and the national institutions, not your personal interest,” said Tunku Ismail in a Facebook posting.
Meanwhile at a separate function in Shah Alam, Khairy, who is also Malaysian SEA Games Organising Committee (Masoc) chairman, received the first batch of 18 official cars for the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games (KL2017) from Naza Group of Companies executive chairman and CEO SM Nasarudin SM Nasimuddin.
Naza, a platinum sponsor of the Games, has committed 298 vehicles to the events.
The fleet of vehicles will be used to ferry state leaders, ministers, chefs de mission, officials, athletes and volunteers during the Games that will be held here in August and September.
In his speech, Khairy said Naza was one of the earliest to sign up as a platinum sponsor and called on Masoc and its 17 sub-committees to be alert to ensure no there is no misstep during the Games.