Members of Parliament may harp about the practices of western parliaments, but they do not even act like they belong in one, House Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia says today.
"We always say we are a democratic country, we should emulate how democratic countries operate.
"But we don't act like the lawmakers we refer to.
"In the British House of Commons, there are no MPs who walk out during the tabling of the budget, never," Pandikar told a press conference in the Parliament reception room today.
This was a swipe at opposition lawmakers who walked out of the Dewan Rakyat during Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's Budget 2017 speech last Friday.
"Maybe for me, as someone who moved to the city from a kampung because I happen to work here, I can't fathom this sort of thinking," he said in jest.
He said he felt sad that the public, who don't know the House rules and conventions, were swayed by media reports and the actions of lawmakers who ran against these norms but pretended it was democracy.
Pandikar said ultimately, it is the MPs who must behave themselves.
"During a debate, no speaker in the world can control anybody unless you put cellotape or masking tape on their mouths.
"The control is actually them (the lawmakers)," he said, noting that they were supposed to be the best in society. - Mkini