A Parliament sitting of Big Foots and monkeys

It doesn’t seem like Parliament has been smooth-sailing. Or at least, it doesn’t look that way to me. Not when we have MPs screaming about “Points of Order”, and resorting to name-calling. Definitely not First-World thinking Parliament.

This shows about 10 minutes of what happened in Parliament today.

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If anyone prefers to read about it, there are plenty of news out there. I personally think that the newspapers aren’t really up to par yet with their reporting. I think the “blogging straight from Parliament” is even more up-to-date compared to news reporters. But still, we read them.

Parliament proceedings disrupted

KUALA LUMPUR: Business got under way in the first proper sitting of Parliament on Wednesday.

In a fiery start, newly-appointed Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia had his hands full just trying to impose some semblance of sanity in a chaotic House, which for the first time, was almost equally divided between the Government and Opposition.

At one point, the Chair’s decision to disallow supplementary questions – for lack of time – saw the Opposition block erupt into protests, led by Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) accusing Pandikar Amin of “making a mockery”of the House.

“This has never happened before in history. It’s the right of MPs to ask supplementary questions,” he said.

The Government block was out in full force on Wednesday, with attendance by many senior ministers, including Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

The session was also being televised live for the first time. However, the Information Ministry is now reviewing this, on the grounds that some MPs were taking the opportunity to play to the gallery.

Things turned ugly when Karpal Singh called Bung Moktar the “Bigfoot from Kinabatangan” and for which he was called “big monkey” in return.

Full article here.

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Point of Order!

KUALA LUMPUR, April 30 — “This is a very bad start, this a terrible start, this is an atrocious start,” veteran opposition MP Lim Kit Siang said in Parliament today when politicians across the divide stood up to score points.

They attempted to grab attention by quibbling over minor points of order and thus obstructing Question Time, which floundered after the first question was asked and answered.

Lim had the audacity to say that Question Time is 90 minutes without any objections. Does he think we should have injury time like a football match? If everyone stuck to decorum, more questions of interest to the rakyat could be asked and answered.

I sympathise with the House Speaker, Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, who was elected unanimously and therefore has the confidence of all 222 to conduct our meetings well. With that in mind, why are we giving him a hard time? He is not a schoolmaster in charge of unruly students, to lecture on our conduct as parliamentarians.

He was right. The first half of the day turned the Parliament into a “Point of Order” forum instead of a forum for lawmakers to debate with decorum and reason.

Full article here.

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For more readings:

Swords drawn, Dewan Rakyat just another battlefield – Malaysian Insider
Parliamentarians pout and preen on 1st day – Malaysian Insider

Read also Tony Pua and Jeff Ooi’s blogs. They have some information that I couldn’t find on the newspaper websites.

Parliament seemed more like kindergarten today. But it IS the first time for a lot of MPs, and they ARE going live for the first time as well. Nerves got the better of them?

Let’s hope for more conducive Parliamentary sessions after this. They had better start getting down to business.



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