KUALA LUMPUR: Parliament detected another four Covid-19 cases on Tuesday (July 27), says Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun.
Responding to a question on the time allocated for the Dewan Rakyat sitting from Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Mt Akin (PH-Hang Tuah Jaya), Azhar added that this is why the House will not sit beyond 5.30pm.
Shamsul had appealed for the current sitting to be extended beyond 5.30pm, citing a slew of issues that must be heard before the House and SOPs to curb Covid-19.
In response, Azhar said it was not possible to extend proceedings beyond 5.30pm, given the new four Covid-19 cases detected in Parliament.
"We have not abided by the advice and recommendations by the Health director-general. If we were to follow his advice, we will have to finish at 2pm,” said Azhar.
"There were four cases on Tuesday and that is why the risk is high. That is why I set 5.30pm to allow everyone to debate," he added, without elaborating on who the four are.
However, Azhar said the extension of the present sitting lies with Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan, who is also overseeing Parliamentary Affairs.
"If the Minister would like to consider, I leave it up to him,” added Azhar.
Shortly after, Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) proceeded with his turn to raise points on the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry's briefing about the National Covid-19 vaccination program.
On July 24, three MPs - Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (BN-Bagan Datuk), Nik Mohamad Abduh Nik Abdul Aziz (PAS-Bachok) and Datuk Mansor Othman (BN-Nibong Tebal) - tested positive for Covid-19.
This was followed by an announcement from Azhar on Monday (July 26) - the first day of the five-day special sitting – where he said that two MPs and 12 Parliamentary staff tested positive for Covid-19.
He also said that five or six MPs and 58 Parliament staff are under home-quarantine after being identified as close contacts.