KOTA KINABALU: The six nominated assemblymen in the Sabah legislative assembly should also be subject to the newly minted Anti-Party Hopping law, says Parti Warisan deputy president Datuk Darell Leiking.
The Moyog assemblyman said that the nominated assemblymen should not enjoy immunity to the anti-hop law as they had equal powers as elected assemblymen, including all voting powers.
"They get the same pay, same pension, same allowances and hold their position for five years and can be re-appointed in each new term without any limit in the number of terms.
"They should be subjected to the anti-hop law," he told reporters after the party's supreme council meeting in Kolombong here Friday (May 26).
Leiking said the reason given by Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor that they were not subject to the anti-hopping law because they were not elected and did not have a constituency was not applicable.
He said that Malaysian senators in Dewan Negara were not subject to the anti-hopping law because they did not have the same rights as the elected MPs.
"Senators are appointed for a three-year term and renewable for a second term only. They do not have the same benefits of MPs," he said, adding that Sabah's nominated assemblymen had equal rights with elected assemblymen.
In Sabah's case, the elected assemblymen form the new government and the six are appointed after the formation of the government.
"But at any time before the next election, these nominated assemblymen can play the role of forming a government within the five-year term.
"There is nothing in the law to say that the nominated assemblymen cannot be chief minister," he added.
Some political analysts are suggesting that the state clip the powers of the nominated assemblymen, votes of confidence for the Chief Minister or amendments to the Constitution if they want to remain immune to the anti-hopping law.
Warisan assemblymen gave the backing to the Anti-Party Hopping law that was passed by all 75 of the 79 assemblymen present at the Sabah Assembly sitting on Thursday (May 25).
Earlier, Shafie told reporters that the party would incorporate the anti-hop provision into the party constitution.
He also agreed that the nominated assemblymen should be subject to the anti-hopping law.
Under Sabah's constitution, the Chief Minister is allowed to advise the Governor to appoint six nominated assemblymen who could be from a political party or non-governmental organisation.