2016 Third Parliamentary Session: Week 5

21st November 2016: The Final Sprint

We are back for the final week of Parliament for the year.

I started my morning at 9 am with breakfast meeting with my staff and interns and also a St Gallen Symposium representative. On our table this morning is a small mountain of the auditor general documents. I screened through and assigned four areas of focus for my office namely; cooking oil, Felda, special purpose vehicles and prison audit.

15138578_1202784589791929_6524543859348158794_oI also greeted some 40 representatives of orang asal communities from all over Malaysia at 10 am. In the hall, we had a fiery morning debate around 11.15 am, that nearly came to blows when deputy minister Tajuddin insulted Teresa Kok and Khalid Samad stood up for her. The actions of the deputy minister is truly unbecoming.

Lastly, UMNO MP Setiu stood and raised the issue of a PKR Youth leader having luxurious houses and cars. On this matter, this youth whom I have never ever met, should declare his assets as soon as possible to protect the party’s image. Anyhow, when Setiu was asked to comment about BN leaders wealth, Setiu kept quiet. MP Hatta Ramli then asked minister Nazri how many cars he have. He replied he has 20 cars and laughed. We are not sure whether his reply was done in jest.

 

22st November 2016: Budget debate – Done

Good morning from Parliament. At 9.30 am this morning, I joined some 40 Members of Parliament and marched from Parliament gate to Bukit Aman to demand the following:

1. Stop harrasing MPs right to speech in Parliament;
2. Stop harrasing MPs and whistleblowers;
3. Repeal Sosma; and
4. Free Maria immediately.

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At around 11.30 am, I learnt that Zahid Hamidi has written a letter to all Muslim MPs inviting them to a special briefing on the hudud 355 bill at 5 pm.

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This is the strongest indicator that the infamous hudud bill will more likely than not, see the light of day either tomorrow or Thursday.

This UMNO – PAS romance has been building for years since the passing of the well respected Tok Guru Nik Aziz.

Under Hadi Awang, we saw Amanah breaking away to form a new party. Under Hadi Awang, we have seen a real closeness between PAS and UMNO. Lately in Parliament, we have seen how PAS indirectly supported the UMNO Budget by abstaining from voting. Then last weekend, PAS did not take part in Bersih 5. Now we wait and see if UMNO is about to return the favour to PAS by supporting hudud in the next two days.

I also bumped into Joseph Kurup in the lift heading up. He was there to meet several MCA leaders. This may be a last attempt by some BN members to stop the 5pm meeting. The urgency suggests that BN component parties may not have been consulted about this.

The future of Malaysia may be decided in the next two days. On this gloomy late afternoon, those in power will meet to chart the course for such a decision.

Parliament for the day wrapped up with budget debates at 11.10 p.m. We had a final vote and the result is as such;

Opposition 73
BN 105

One PAS member abstained from voting, indirectly supporting UMNO BN.

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Tomorrow we start the last two days of what is expected to be an explosive session. The two big clashes will be the hudud bill and also the disciplinary hearing of YB Lim Lip Eng, Segambut who clashed with the Speaker weeks ago.

 

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