Only 80 MPs for Dewan Rakyat sitting


ONLY 80 MPs can be in the Dewan Rakyat for this sitting starting today.

In a proclamation yesterday, Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun said of the total, 41 MPs will be from the government while the remaining 39 will consist of Opposition and independent MPs.

“The selection for the honourable MPs that would be in the Dewan Rakyat will be decided by your respective parties.

“The Dewan Rakyat secretary will provide a Special Card to Kota Baru MP (Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan) to coordinate the attendance from the administrative side as well as the backbenchers.

“Meanwhile, a Special Card will be given to Sungai Petani MP (Datuk Johari Abdul) for the attendance from the Opposition as well as independent MPs,” he said.

The daily Dewan Rakyat sitting will now run from 10am to 2pm as of next week, Nov 9, until the end of the current session which will be on Dec 15, 2020.

Azhar Azizan said a meeting was held with party whips on Wednesday regarding the coordination for Dewan Rakyat amid the rise in Covid-19 cases.

Under the new ruling, session for oral answers will be shortened to an hour from 10am to 11am on Mondays and Wednesdays, while on Tuesdays and Thursdays the session will be for 55 minutes, starting from 10.55am until 11am.

Only one supplementary question is allowed for the session.

“Meanwhile, the Minister’s Question Time will be held every Tuesday and Thursday for five minutes at 10am.

“The honourable MPs will read their questions and the minister responsible for the reply will give a written reply on the same day.

“The questions and answers will be published on Parliament Malaysia’s portal as soon as possible,” he said.

Azhar Azizan added that the current session can have two additional days of sitting, which will be on Dec 16 and 17, 2020, if there is a need to extend the period.

He also said if the Dewan Rakyat were to sit until 5.30pm daily according to the original Order of Business, the MPs would have had an allocated time totalling 89 hours and 30 minutes for the debates on Budget 2021 at the policy and committee levels.

However, the adjustments have shortened the total time allocated for the debates to only 66 hours.

“Although there is a reduction in the duration for debates, MPs still have enough time in considering Budget 2021,” he said.

He added that the measures taken will be temporary to ensure the safety of the MPs in the Parliament building following the spread of Covid-19.

The Dewan Rakyat sitting was cut short to 1pm this week due to positive cases involving a media personnel and a Dewan Negara’s special officer.

The Health Ministry has identified the Parliament building as a high-risk area.

Read our earlier report: