Challenge to Speaker Pandikar to cite an instance from another Commonwealth Parliament where the Speaker used sub judice rule over court proceeding in another country to stop parliamentary question, debate or scrutiny of a financial scandal
The Speaker of Parliament, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, likes to quote back to me one observation I had made in Parliament, that a good Speaker does not speak much.
Pandikar is not only a very talkative Speaker, he even holds media conferences to justify his decisions and rulings, some of which are quite high-handed and most indefensible from the standpoint of impartial and independent interpretation of the parliamentary standing orders.
The best place for Pandikar’s justification of his arbitrary and indefensible rulings and decisions, the most recent of which were the rejection of questions from over 30 MPs on the 1MDB scandal and refusal to allow the 1MDB scandal, which had turned Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy, to be the subject of debate in Parliament, is in Parliament itself and not in media conferences where the Speaker cannot be rebutted by MPs.
DAP MP for Puchong, Gobind Singh Deo, who also had questions on 1MDB rejected by the Speaker, had given notice on Wednesday of a substantive motion to review the Speaker’s rulings which in first-world Parliaments, would have come up for debate and decision in Parliament after a 48-hour notice.
Will Gobind’s motion to review the Speaker’s rulings come up for debate in Parliament next week?
This will be the proper place and forum for the Speaker’s rationale and justification for his high-handed and indefensible rulings to be ventilated, and not at media conferences.
Pandikar’s use of sub judice rule to prevent questions and debates on the United States’ Department of Justice (DOJ)’s three series of kleptocratic suits to forfeit US$1.7 billion of 1MDB-linked assets misappropriated from US$4.5 billion 1MDB funds money-laundered through American banks is the most ludicrous and indefensible, as if the independence, impartiality and integrity of the American system of justice needs assistance and protection from the Speaker of Malaysian Parliament.
When the Speaker of Parliament cannot even ensure that the Malaysian Judiciary can uphold the integrity and sanctity of the Malaysian Constitution, as in the current controversy in the unconstitutional extension of the tenures of the Chief Justice and the Court of Appeal President, it is misplaced arrogance and impertinence to assume that the Malaysian Speaker can protect the independence, impartiality and integrity of the American system of justice!
I challenge Speaker Pandikar to cite an instance from another Commonwealth Parliament where the Speaker used sub judice rule over court proceeding in another country to stop parliamentary question, debate or scrutiny of a financial scandal.
Let Parliament as a whole decide whether Pandikar had abused his powers as Speaker in his various rulings rejecting questions by over 30 MPs on the 1MDB scandal, as well as virtually banning and prohibiting the 1MDB scandal from being raised in parliamentary proceedings, including Pandikar’s new-fangled use of the sub judice rule, but this will only happen if substantive motions to review the Speaker’s rulings, which require only two day’s notice under Dewan Rakyat Standing Order 43, are allowed to be debated and resolved – and not just die undebated on the Order Paper.