#kerajaangagal142 – Parliament must become a War Parliament against Covid-19 Pandemic to assist the Executive, which had been fighting a losing battle this year
I am surprised that the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Parliament), Takiyuddin Hassan, still insists that Parliament cannot convene so long as emergency is in effect.
This is against Section 14(1) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021, which states:
“14 (1) For as long as the emergency is in force –
(b) The Parliament shall be summoned, prorogued and dissolved on a date as the Yang di Pertuan Agong thinks appropriate.”
It is as clear as crystal from this section in the Emergency Ordinance that Parliament can be convened “for as long as the emergency is in force”, and Takiyuddin has only himself to blame if the overwhelming majority of thinking Malaysians wonder that type of a de facto law Minister we have got in the country.
The Yang di Pertuan Agong is right when he said on Feb. 24 after meeting Dewan Negara speaker Rais Yatim and Dewan Rakyat speaker Azhar Azizan Harun that Parliament sitting can convene during the emergency order.
The Comptroller of the Royal Household Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin said the king has stated his view to Rais and Azhar that Parliament can resume on a date deemed suitable by the ruler upon the advice of the prime minister.
The Yang di Pertuan Agong referred to subparagraph 14(1)(b) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 which states that Parliament should be called, prorogued and dissolved on a date as deemed appropriate by His Majesty on the advice of the prime minister.
This is not the first time that the de facto Law Minister had perversely disagreed with the Yang di Pertuan Agong. Takiyuddin also gave a ridiculous interpretation to the phrase “as soon as possible” to mean September, October or indefinitely when the Yang di Pertuan Agong after the Conference of Rulers special meeting on June 16 asked for Parliament to be convened “as soon as possible”.
Is Takiyuddin fit to be a Law Minister?
I am surprised that the Attorney-General, Idris Harun, could agree to the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 which suspended Parliament, and the Parliament Speaker, Azhar Azizan Harun, could agree that Parliament be suspended by the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 as many lawyers and constitutional experts are of the opinion that the suspension of Parliament goes against the very grain of the Malaysian Constitution and the system of governance founded on a constitutional monarchy based on parliamentary democracy.
I agree that any interpretation of the Constitution must adhere strictly to the principle that Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy based on a parliamentary democracy.
Idris Harun had issued a long statement justifying his stand that the law requires the Cabinet to advise the Yang di Pertuan Agong on when to convene Parliament.
Is he prepared to similarly justify his stand that Parliament could be suspended during an emergency?
Just as Idris Harun had made a serious error of judgement and law in advising the Prime Minister that Parliament can be suspended in an emergency, the Speaker of Parliament, Azhar Azizan Harun had made a serious error of judgement, law and parliamentary practice in not protesting to the Prime Minister about the unconstitutional suspension of Parliament by the emergency.
The Cabinet at its meeting on Wednesday has the last opportunity to make amends by observing both the spirit and letter of the Malaysian Constitution as well as fulfilling the two conclusions of the Conference of Rulers special meeting on June 16, viz: that Parliament and the State Assemblies convene “as soon as possible” and that there is no need to extend the emergency beyond August 1, 2021.
This is because it is still possible to convene Parliament with the requisite 28-notice before August 1, 2021 if the Cabinet decides on Wednesday, 30th June, to convene Parliament.
The Muhyiddin Cabinet must bear all responsibility for a full-blown constitutional crisis if it decides otherwise on Wednesday.
There must be a new start to the war against Covid-19 pandemic where all political and other differences are temporarily put aside so that the country can win the war against the coronavirus to save lives, livelihoods and the country’s economic future.
The National Recovery Plan hurriedly announced by the Prime Minister on 15th June on the eve of the Conference of Rulers special meeting is not one which can win the war against the Covid-19 pandemic.
This is illustrated by the last-minute decision to further extend the “total lockdown” of the nation until the threshold of less than 4,000 cases a day under Phase One of the exit plan is reached and the summary fashion of its announcement instead of through a live national telecast.
At the current rate of Covid-19 pandemic in Malaysia, we are likely to be ranked No. 35 among nations with the most cumulative total of Covid-19 cases by the end of June in three days’ time.
Malaysia will then have the dubious distinction as the only country in the world to jump 50 ranks in less than eight months, i.e. from No. 85 on Nov. 18 to No. 35 at the end of this month among countries with most cumulative total of Covid-19 cases – a shocking measure of the failure of the Malaysian war against Covid-19 pandemic.
Parliament must be immediately reconvened and transformed to become a War Parliament against Covid-19 Pandemic to assist the Executive, which had been fighting a losing battle this year.
From January 1st this year till yesterday, there had been 618,970 Covid-19 cases and 4,470 Covid-19 deaths. How many more people will die before the end of Covid-19 pandemic?
The Prime Minister has failed to deliver his promise in his 2021 New Year Message to “strengthen Malaysia’s position on the world stage”.#
It is most ironic that despite such a pledge, Malaysia has suddenly catapulted to become the world’s worst state in handling the Covid-19 pandemic.
Let us have one or two years of political moratorium and a “Win the War Against Covid-19 Pandemic” (WACOP) coalition in Parliament to save the country from the devastation in lives, economic losses and societal damages of the pandemic.
We must find the political will and ingenuity to remove all factors which undermine the national objective to reverse the tides of defeat and win the war against the Covid-19 pandemic.
As a start, let us have a hands-on and effective Health Minister as it is most ridiculous for Malaysia to fight the invisible but lethal war against the Covid-19 pandemic with a “dud” Health Minister.
Adham Baba had disabled himself from being an effective Health Minister with his “warm water” cure for Covid-19 gaffe in March last year, compounded by his rare ability to be prone to gaffes, as when early this month, he made the h blooper comparing Malaysia to UK on Covid-19 deaths when for that past week, Malaysia’s Covid-19 deaths was 11 times that of United Kingdom!
Adham is in trouble again and Health Ministry secretary-general has to come to his rescue for endorsing a most racial approach for the appointment of medical officers as well as discriminatory practices based on race.
There must also be extensive parliamentary reforms to enable Parliament to play its proper role as a War Parliament against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Finally, Parliament should finalise a more proper Covid-19 exit plan than the National Recovery Plan announced by the Prime Minister on June 15.