Parliament rules and legal framework to be strengthened


THE government has agreed to improve the administrative structure and legal framework related to the Parliament, following the visitation of the Minister from Prime Minister’s Office (Law) Datuk Seri Dr Haji Wan Junaidi Jaafar to Dewan Negara and Dewan Rakyat.

In a joint statement yesterday, Yang Di-Pertua Dewan Negara Senator Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim and Yang di-Pertua Dewan Rakyat Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun said the parliament reform agenda would dignify and strengthen the position of the Malaysian Parliament as a branch of the government under the Federal Constitution.

“The focus of the improvement agenda is the amendment to the Houses of Parliament (Privileges and Powers) Act 1952 (Act 347) as well as re-establishing the Parliamentary Services Act 1963 which was repealed in 1992 to ensure the concept of separation of powers is truly appreciated, respected and practised so that Parliament’s authority as the highest legislative body in the country.

“In line with this transformation plan, the Rules of Procedure for both the Dewan Negara and Dewan Rakyat will be improved, covering aspects of meeting conduct, member discipline as well as to strengthen the select committees that have been and will be formed,” they said.

They added that the proposals for the transformation measure are the prerogative of Parliament and will be mobilized as soon as possible before being submitted to the Cabinet for evaluation and approval.

“Both Yang di-Pertua Dewan Negara and Dewan Rakyat are pleased with the commitment and ideas given by the minister to the improvement agenda and the proposal to form a Joint Committee of the Dewan Negara and Dewan Rakyat and the Prime Minister’s Department to ensure that the improvement agenda can be implemented.

They added that both of them warmly welcome the change and will give their full support to the transformation and reform measures of Parliament that will be undertaken.

“The support will be considered as a manifestation of determination to uphold parliamentary democracy and the principle of separation of powers between the legislature, the exclusive and the legislature will continue to be preserved and function as intended.”