We did not 'ponteng' - Opposition MPs
KUALA LUMPUR - Several Opposition MPs today defended their absence from the morning session of the Dewan Rakyat, citing their attendance at the 'Save Syariah Gathering' as the reason.
Bukit Gantang MP Datuk Syed Abu Hussin Hafiz Syed Abdul Fasal explained that the absence of most Perikatan Nasional (PN) MPs was due to their participation in the gathering held at the Palace of Justice grounds in Putrajaya.
"We are always present in the Dewan Rakyat, although this morning we went to the Palace of Justice to show our support and solidarity for sharia punishment.
"We were said to be absent, but in fact, we were not," he clarified during the 2024 Supply Bill (Budget 2024) debate session at the committee level for the Health Ministry.
Meanwhile, Pasir Mas MP Ahmad Fadhli Shaari asked whether the absence of several full ministers could also be considered absenteeism.
"If the absence of Opposition MPs is considered absenteeism, can the absence of all ministers except the Health Minister also be considered absenteeism?" he inquired.
Syed Abu Hussin responded, "Perhaps the ministers are busy distributing allocations."
Earlier, the Dewan Rakyat was briefly disrupted due to the absence of almost all opposition MPs during the oral question and answer session.
The issue was brought to attention by the Speaker of the House of Dewan Rakyat, Tan Sri Johari Abdul, during the question session for the fifth question presented by Datuk Ramanan Ramakrishnan (PH-Sungai Buloh).
It was reported that over 1,000 people attended the Save Shariah Gathering and joined the prayers held at the Palace of Justice grounds that morning.
The rally, organised by PN, was aimed at protesting against the legal action initiated by two individuals challenging 20 provisions in the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Code Enactment (I) 2019. - AWANI