PUTRAJAYA: Former Chief Justice Tun Arifin Zakaria has been named the chairman of the special independent committee that will advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the state of emergency.
Arifin will lead a committee comprising 18 other members, including health experts, business community leaders, former civil servants, and lawmakers from both sides of the divide, said the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Also in the committee are former chief secretary to the government Tan Sri Samsudin Osman, former inspector-general of police Tan Sri Norian Mai, and former Armed Forces chief Tan Sri Zulkifli Zainal Abidin.
Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia president Tan Sri Ter Leong Yap, former health director-general Prof Tan Sri Dr Mohamad Taha Arif, and heart surgeon Tan Sri Dr Yahya Awang are also on the committee.
The PMO also announced the appointment of Cyberjaya University pro-chancellor Tan Sri Dr R. Palan, former deputy public prosecutor Datuk Sallehuddin Saidin, Perlis mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin, public health expert Datuk Dr Andrew Kiyu and former Sabah state secretary Tan Sri Sukarti Wakiman to the committee.
The politicians in the committee include Tanjung Karang MP Tan Sri Noh Omar, Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim (Batang Lupar) Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun (Beaufort) and Dr Nik Muhammad Zawawi Salleh (Pasir Puteh).
Opposition lawmakers Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail (Kulim-Bandar Baharu), Anthony Loke (Seremban) and Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad (Kuala Selangor) are also on the committee.
The PMO said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah has consented to the appointments.
The appointments are effective immediately.
The PMO said the special independent committee was set up under Section 2 of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 to advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on how long the state of emergency is needed.
On Jan 12, the King decreed for an Emergency to be in force until Aug 1 as a proactive measure to contain the worsening Covid-19 pandemic in the country.