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Johor Speaker rules no more proxy oral questions from assemblymen who skip sittings next year

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

ISKANDAR PUTERI, Dec 7 — The Johor State Legislature will no longer entertain oral questions submitted by assemblymen who are absent from House sittings starting from January 2023.

The decision was announced by state assembly Speaker Datuk Mohd Puad Zarkashi today just before Question Time.

“I’ve decided today that starting from next year, in the next session, the state legislative assembly will no longer allow assemblymen who are not present in this House to submit their oral questions through other assemblymen who are present.

“Being absent is considered absent. We do not allow members who do not follow the rules because this will affect the credibility of the assembly,” he said.

Puad made his ruling after three assemblymen who were absent from yesterday’s sitting without formal prior notice had their oral questions read out by proxies. He named the three as Mahkota assemblyman Datuk Sharifah Azizah Syed Zain, Tangkak assemblyman Ee Chin Li, and Panti assemblyman Hahasrin Hashim.

“Strictly speaking, the Johor state legislative assembly does not allow its members to act as proxies, and the same goes for oral questions that cannot be communicated by proxies,” he said.

He cited Standing Order 26(4) to justify his decision. He added that the ruling will be strictly enforced and that no excuses will be accepted, “even if an honourable member is not present due to being infected with Covid-19 or something else”.