Allocations for Foreign, National Unity ministries passed via voice vote


KUALA LUMPUR: Allocations for the Foreign Ministry and National Unity Ministry under Budget 2021 was passed with a simple voice vote in Parliament on Tuesday (Dec 1).

This came despite speculation that Opposition MPs would force a bloc vote for every ministry when their respective allocations were about to be passed in Parliament at the committee stage.

Allocations for the Foreign Ministry was passed under Deputy Speaker Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said's chair, while allocations for the National Unity Ministry was passed under Deputy Speaker Datuk Mohd Rashid Hasnon's watch.

On Monday (Nov 30), the Opposition failed to derail allocations for the Prime Minister's Department and the Finance Ministry after they failed to garner enough support when they called for a bloc vote.

There were 105 MPs who voted "aye" while 95 voted "nay" for allocations for the Prime Minister's Department to be approved.

Under the Finance Ministry, 107 MPs voted "aye" while 95 MPs voted against.

The Opposition had previously come under fire after it failed to vote down Budget 2021 despite criticising it heavily during the two-week debates at policy stage.

Budget 2021 was passed with a simple voice vote in Parliament on Nov 26 after a bloc vote failed to be initiated when PKR and DAP MPs did not stand up in support of Parti Amanah Negara's Datuk Mahfuz Omar who called for the bloc vote.

Under Parliament Standing Order 46(3), a Bill will be put to the House for a voice vote of 'ayes' and 'nays' at the debates with the results announced by the Speaker.

The results can be challenged by an MP under Parliament's Standing Order 46(4) by calling for a bloc-vote which involves actual vote count of lawmakers present in the House.

However, for a bloc-vote to be triggered, not less than 15 lawmakers must be seen standing in support, failing which the Speaker would announce results of the earlier voice vote.

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