‘Must be as soon as possible’: Istana Negara emphasises Agong’s view on reopening Parliament

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A general view of Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur June 15, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
A general view of Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur June 15, 2021. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUALA LUMPUR, June 18 — Istana Negara issued an excerpt today of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s views on reconvening Parliament, putting emphasis on his call that this “must be as soon as possible”.

Istana Negara posted a poster of this on its official Facebook page without additional comment, but appeared to stress the word “must” by capitalising this.

The apparent reminder came after the Prime Minister’s Office statement yesterday acknowledging the recommendations the Agong and the Malay Rulers made after their special meeting on Wednesday.

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In the statement, the PMO said it would act on the recommendations in accordance with the Federal Constitution but gave no commitment on when.

After the special meeting on Wednesday, Istana Negara issued a statement saying Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and the Malay Rulers were of the view that Parliament and the state assemblies should meet as soon as possible.

Following the Agong’s remarks, however, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan argued that Al-Sultan Abdullah only said Parliament should meet but did not specify when.

Today, two federal lawmakers said Parliament must reconvene before September as the government has proposed, and that a failure to meet by August 2 would cause a constitutional crisis if the Emergency were to be lifted as scheduled on August 1.

Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi Fadzil pointed out that Parliament has gone beyond the six-month constitutional limit since its last sitting in December and should ideally meet before the Emergency ends to avert any potential crisis.

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