KUALA LUMPUR: Lawmakers are not allowed to bring the report on the Election Commission's redelineation exercise out of the Dewan Rakyat, said Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia.
They are not even allowed to read the much-anticipated report before it is tabled for its first reading next Wednesday (March 28) as it has been embargoed.
Pandikar said this when several Opposition MPs had asked for an explanation on the matter.
Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan (PAS-Kota Baru) had asked Pandikar to clarify on his ruling earlier that the reports cannot be "disiarkan" (published).
"Does this mean that MPs are not allowed to take the reports out of the august hall?" he asked.
Lembah Pantai PKR lawmaker Nurul Izzah Anwar said she was about to read the report but was abruptly told by the Bentara (sergeant-at-arms) that it cannot be opened until next Wednesday.
Some lawmakers even raised queries that they have read a little, as such, have they gone against the embargo.
To this, Pandikar Amin said that the reason why the documents are not allowed to be brought out is because should information from the reports leak out before Wednesday, it will be difficult to trace the source of the leak.
"I will not be able to know who is responsible for the leak, none of you will admit it.
"Secondly, this issue on the redelineation has been extensively reported in the media so you already know what to debate," he said.
Lawmakers lamented they need to read the report to have some information before they can debate on it.
To this, Pandikar Amin asked if the MPs could give him a guarantee that whatever they know will not be shared to others before the report is tabled next week.
"I have mentioned that the report is embargoed until Wednesday so let it be there (on your tables).
"You can feel it, you can touch it but you are not allowed to bring it out of the Dewan. If you are using the excuse to bring it out of the Dewan to read (and prepare) for debates, I know that many of you here are already well aware of the issue," he said.