Parliament to sit for a month from March 8?

By John Isaac

THE first meeting of the Fourth Session of the 14th Parliament is supposed to convene for a month from March 8.

This was according to the official portal of the Parliament of Malaysia.

However, the list of the order paper has yet to be uploaded.

In a statement on Wednesday (Feb 24), Comptroller of the Royal Household Datuk Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin said Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah believes that Parliament sitting can be held on a date suitable to the King upon advice from Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

This is despite a State of Emergency proclaimed by the King is currently enforced nationwide due to the Covid-19 pandemic from Jan 12 until Aug this year.

The allowance for the session to be held is mentioned in Sub Paragraph 14(1)(b) of Emergency Ordinance (Necessary Powers) 2021 that parliament can be called, prorogated and dissolved on a date suitable to the King upon advice from the prime minister.

This has shot down reactions from parties that the State of Emergency prohibits Parliament sessions from being held is wrong.

According to The New Straits Times, Ahmad Fadil said that the King’s consent to the Proclamation of Emergency on January 12 was a proactive measure to curb the Covid-19 outbreak that has claimed over 1,000 lives so far.

“The King stressed that Malaysia as a country that practices a democratic system based on the principles of the Constitution, every branch of the country’s administration whether the Executive, the Judiciary or Parliament must always abide by these principles,” he was quoted as saying.

The King had also granted an audience to Dewan Negara speaker Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim and Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun at Istana Negara on Wednesday.