DAP backs Fixed-Term Parliament Act proposal while calling for scrutiny

16 Jan 2024 02:59pm
Anthony Loke - FILE PIX
Anthony Loke - FILE PIX

SEBERANG JAYA - DAP, through its Secretary-General Anthony has expressed support for the proposed Fixed-Term Parliament Act, citing its potential to alleviate political instability within a term.

However, Loke stressed the need for careful examination before implementation.

"The Fixed-Term Parliament Act is indeed something we agree with, as, in principle, it is good for reducing problems or political issues during the parliamentary term.

"Nevertheless, in terms of its implementation, it needs to be looked at more carefully," he told a media conference here today.

Loke had earlier attended the signing ceremony of a memorandum between the Railway Assets Corporation (RAC) and the Penang State Housing Board (LPNPP) for development on parts of Lot 286, 65, and 67 in Bandar Perai.

Also present was Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

He added that the Fixed-Term Parliament Act has been implemented in the United Kingdom, where, for the past five years, it cannot be dissolved arbitrarily by the Prime Minister but must be brought to the Senate.

"If there is any decision to dissolve Parliament, it needs to be brought to the House to be decided by MPs.

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"However, this matter is still under study. I believe that the Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said, will bring the proposal to the Cabinet," he said.

It was reported that Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi suggested the composition of a Fixed-Term Parliament Act to ensure the formation of a lasting government until the end of the term or before the next general election is held.

Zahid said the move would also guarantee the stability of the country since the government would not be disrupted by the manoeuvres of politicians for their own interests and agendas.

The setting of a parliamentary term means that the date of Parliament dissolution is determined by law, where the Dewan Rakyat cannot be dissolved before the date set by the law.

Previously, Malaysia's Ambassador to the United States, Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, proposed amending the Federal Constitution to ensure a five-year period between general elections, thereby creating a fixed term for Parliament.

In another development, Loke, who is also the Transport Minister, described former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's statement regarding the loyalty of the Indian community to the country as a regrettable statement.

According to him, the statement is also seen as having hurt the feelings of all communities in the country, especially the Indian community.

"The statement is very regrettable because everyone who loves the country disagrees and does not support his statement at all.

"This is because it is a statement that hurts especially the feelings of the Indian community.

"A leader and former statesman should not question the loyalty of any community to the country.

"I am very disappointed with Tun's attitude because when he was the fourth Prime Minister before, he had brought a vision that, for me, was very good to unite the Malaysian people, namely Vision 2020," he said.

Earlier, Dr Mahathir claimed that the Indian community in Malaysia is still not entirely loyal to the country because they are still 'tied' to their home country.

Dr Mahathir said that one must be recognised as a Malay to be eligible to consider Malaysia as their own country.