Be fair with your criticism, Speaker tells Syed Saddiq

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, June 8 — Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul rebuked Muda Muar MP Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman today for misrepresenting the former’s rejection of his motion to discuss the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) issue in Parliament.

Johari said Syed Saddiq was not being sincere in his criticism of the rejection, as the latter did not disclose the reason the Speaker gave for the decision.

“According to Muar (Syed Saddiq), I rejected his motion because, in Muar’s assumption or in his belief, I considered this (LSC issue) not a public interest and that it was not an urgent need.

“Muar did not act fairly,” Johari said in Parliament today.

Johari said his written reply to Syed Saddiq clearly explained why the motion was not accepted.

“I said, Yang Berhormat, your motion does not meet Standing Order 18 (7)(c) because of what? I was informed that the Ministry of Defence is required to present a progress report on the construction of the LCS project every three months to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) until this project is completed.

“And the PAC has also decided to make a visit to Lumut (Perak) to conduct further investigation, which means the PAC has made a decision; why should we talk about it further?

“Wait for the PAC report, and after that, we can discuss... I will allow it but after the PAC report (is completed),” Johari said.

Earlier in Parliament, Syed Saddiq had expressed his dissatisfaction over the rejection, saying a letter he received from the Speaker’s office stated that the matter was “not a matter of public interest” and “not urgent”.

He also asked the Speaker to reconsider the decision.

Johari today reminded parliamentarians that he was only exercising his authority based on Standing Orders that were authored by those among them.

“And everything that happens in the Federal Constitution is also a law made by the MPs. I only enforce what is contained in these (the Standing Orders and Federal Constitution).

“So, when I make a decision, I am guided by these two documents, so it is not fair for Muar and other people as well; if you want to fight among yourselves, I don’t care, but don’t attack the Speaker and my deputies,” Johari added.

He added that as the Speaker of Parliament, he was also duty-bound to ensure the government’s business was prioritised ahead of other matters.

“So, don’t fight with the Speaker, it’s not worth it and that’s not the way. I ask that Muar correct this, now as I am speaking, the public is watching; Muar, correct it don’t be unfair.

“If you want to play politics, go head, but don’t play politics with me because I’m not a politician now, I’m a Speaker of the House,” Johari said.