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Thursday, November 29, 2012

No quorum, sitting almost called off

Deputy speaker raps MPs, ministers, deputy ministers for not attending Parliament sitting.
KUALA LUMPUR: Dewan Rakyat deputy speaker Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar today criticised both Barisan Nasional (BN) and Pakatan Rakyat MPs for being absent from Parliament.
“I’m very disappointed. You guys must be here. Postpone your other engagements and attend Parliament sitting,” said a angry Junaidi.
He also reprimanded government ministers and deputy ministers for being absent saying,” Your job is to the country, not party.”
Umno is currently having its annual general meeting at the PWTC. The assembly started yesterday and is scheduled to end on Saturday.
As of 10am, only Agriculture and Agro-Based deputy ministers Chua Tee Yong and Johari Baharum were seen  present at the Dewan Rakyat.
Earlier, Kota Melaka MP Sim Tong Him raised Standing Order 13, after noticing many MPs were absent from Dewan Rakyat.
Standing Order 13 stipulates that Dewan Rakyat sitting could only be called if there was a minimum quorum of 26 MPs, excluding the Speaker.
“I understand that Umno general assembly is going on but we need to have enough quorum in the House,” said Sim.
At this juncture, Tebrau MP Teng Boon Soon stood up and said that there no point accusing government backbenchers of being absent when there many abseentees from the opposition as well.
This ensured a heated argument in the Hall among government and opposition backbenchers till Ipoh Barat MP M Kulasegaran and Sim urged Junaidi to make decision on the matter after calling for a second bell.
The deputy speaker then rang the bell again for about two minutes, ensuing more MPs to enter the Hall and reached the minimum requirement as stipulated by the standing order.
“This is a lesson to all of us. Make sure you guys (MPs) stay in the Dewan,” said Junaidi.

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