Party constitution changes to prevent party-hopping can be challenged in court, says Wan Junaidi

KAJANG: Any attempt by political parties to amend its constitution to prevent its members, especially members of parliament, from switching political allegiances can be challenged in court.

Dewan Negara president Tan Sri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said this is because amendments can only be approved by the Registrar of Societies (ROS).

He also suggested that the government amends the Anti-Party Hopping Act to address any loopholes.

"When a party decides on an amendment, only the ROS can determine if the said amendment is valid. However, it is ultimately the courts that rule if it (amendment) is adequate (fulfils legal requirements).

"(In this case), an amendment to the law is much better to address the matter as it is more detailed and is from the Anti-Party Hopping Act itself rather than being explained elsewhere," he said.

Wan Junaidi was speaking to reporters after attending the 'Bicara Tokoh' talk organised by the National Council of Professors that discussed the topic "The Anti-Party Hopping Act and Government Stability" here on Friday (Jan 19).

Also present was MPN president Prof Datuk Dr Raduan Che Rose.

Umno secretary-general Datuk Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki last week said that the party's constitution amendment in January last year prevents its MPs from defying party decisions, including throwing support to anyone for the post of prime minister.

In addition, Umno MPs who join any coalition not affiliated with the party will also automatically lose their party membership, he said.

At the same time, the constitutions of DAP and Amanah also state that any of their elected representatives who defy the party's instructions on fundamental issues will automatically lose their membership. – Bernama

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