Umno pushes on with Parliament reconvening

‘The govt’s failure to implement the order is considered a form of disrespect towards the Conference of Rulers’

by ASILA JALIL / pic by TMR FILE

UMNO Supreme Council will decide on the party’s next course of action if the government does not give any satisfactory response on the Parliament reconvening.

“If there is no satisfactory response from the government to this call (to reopen Parliament), it will be decided by the Supreme Council as demanded by the party and in line with the mandate from the party’s general assembly,” Umno information chief Shahril Sufian Hamdan said in a statement yesterday.

In March, the Malay-based party decided in its resolution that it will leave the Perikatan Nasional government once the Parliament is dissolved.

The Umno Supreme Council had met several times since last year to decide on their ties with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia.

Shahril further said there should be no reason to delay the parliamentary sitting when the order of the meeting is set by the government.

“If there is a rise in political temperature or constitutional crisis, it is due to the government’s hard stance,” he added.

Earlier yesterday, Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi called for the government to respect the views made by the King, backed by the Conference of Rulers, and allow for Parliament to reconvene within 14 days.

Ahmad Zahid said the government should no longer use the terms “as soon as possible” and “immediately” on its statement pertaining to the opening of the Parliament as the King had stated his views on the matter.

“Umno is adamant in urging the government to respect the order made by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the Rulers to convene the Parliament session within 14 days from the date of this statement.

“The government’s failure to implement the order is considered a form of disrespect towards the Conference of Rulers,” he said.

Last Thursday, the King, with the full backing of the Conference of Rulers, asked for the Parliament to be reconvened as soon as practicable and that the current Emergency be lifted once it runs out by Aug 1.

The Keeper of the Rulers Seal Tan Sri Syed Danial Syed Ahmad released a statement after a special meeting was held among the Rulers in Kuala Lumpur.

The Rulers stated that the only exit strategy to end the pandemic in the country is through mass vaccinations and herd immunity, as well as a stable government that has a majority support.

Ahmad Zahid said Umno fully supports the statement made by the King on the opening of the Parliament as it is an important platform to address issues surrounding the pandemic.

“As stated by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Umno is of the view that it is crucial for the Parliament to be held immediately to address the various demands and hopes of the rakyat who are struggling amid the Covid-19 pandemic, while ensuring accountability in the governance.

“As a party that was founded on the objective to preserve and defend the Conference of Rulers as stipulated in Clause 3 of Umno’s Constitution, a Supreme Council meeting will be held to finalise the next course of action,” he added.

The Conference of Rulers’ meeting came after Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah granted audience to 18 political leaders seeking their views on ways to manage the Covid-19 pandemic in the country.

The Rulers said it is vital to honour the country’s check and balance mechanism between the executive, legislative and judiciary, and that the country needs a transparent and accountable administration for the sake of the people.

“In that spirit, the Rulers concurred with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong who decreed that the Parliament should reconvene soonest,” Syed Danial said in the statement last week.

Following the statement made by the King, Pakatan Harapan Presidential Council urged Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to call for Parliament sitting as soon as possible or step down from his post.

The council said Muhyiddin would give the impression that he has lost confidence to govern if he continues to delay the Parliament session.