VK Liew: Speaker undemocratic in rejecting Shafie's motion of support for Dr M

  • Nation
  • Friday, 08 May 2020

KOTA KINABALU: The Parliament Speaker is acting undemocratically in rejecting Semporna MP Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal's motion for a vote of confidence in Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as prime minister, former law minister Datuk VK Liew claims.

He said that a confidence vote motion should be decided by the Speaker based on Parliament Standing Orders and not by an assumption that the current government of Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has the majority in the 222-member house.

"The question is how does the Speaker know they have a majority as no count was done on who has the majority in Parliament.

"If there is block voting during the parliamentary sitting on May 18, it can be decided who has the majority," said the Batu Sapi MP, who is permanent chairman of Parti Warisan Sabah, which is led by Shafie.

"I believe that the Speaker is acting undemocratically and against the spirit of the Constitution," he said in a Facebook post on Friday (May 8) when reacting to the decision of the Speaker to reject Shafie's motion of confidence for Dr Mahathir as prime minister.

Speaker Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Yusof had rejected Shafie's request to table the motion in Parliament when it convenes on May 18.

Liew said that Shafie was not questioning the powers of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong in appointing a prime minister but was using the Parliamentary floor to prove that Dr Mahathir had the majority.

"It is a proper way for the democratic process and many people still want to know whether Muhyiddin or Dr Mahathir has the majority," he said.

Liew also said he was unaware of the Speaker's decision for Langkawi MP Dr Mahahthir's vote of no-confidence against Muhyiddin.

He said that based on the letter from the Parliamentary secretariat, the meeting would be held for one day with the opening by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and they would not hold question hour and entertain any motions due to the movement control order (MCO).

However, Liew said the Speaker had agreed to accept his motion for Parliament to debate on extending the session to eight days as it was not fair for MPs, particularly from Sabah and Sarawak, who had to travel to Kuala Lumpur and attend a one-day session.

"After that, on our return to the state, we have to undergo Covid-19 testing and take other precautionary steps," he added.

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