June 26, 2022

Attendance schedule for Dewan Rakyat? Are PH reps MPs or schoolchildren?

2 min read

All Members of Parliament (MP) inherit the mandate of the people, while their salary comes from taxpayers.

Therefore, their rightful and eminent duty would be to attend Parliament sessions diligently for the purpose of debating government policies, engage in law-making, and bringing the people’s interest into the discussion.

In the recent chapter especially, MPs should actively involve themselves in the debate over Budget 2020, while ministers take on the role of clarifying the unknowns, be it federal or local.

However, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government has recently issued an unprecedented “attendance schedule” for MPs.

Is this because there are PH MPs who shrug off responsibility?

How can the nation’s direction be decided by people who have self-disciplinary capabilities similar to schoolchildren?

That the PH government has to resort to an attendance schedule to herd their absentee MPs back to Parliament is as ridiculous as it is shameful.

Nevertheless, with the implementation of this attendance schedule by the Federal Government, treating MPs as if they were schoolchildren, insults not only the virtue of the position, but also the dignity of those who voted for these MPs.

It also seems like PH is more concerned about preventing situations of lack of quorum, and preventing opposition party’s criticism, which is simply putting the cart before the horse.

In other words, PH MPs are expected to simply attend proceedings and act as rubber stamps to ensure smooth progress.

At this rate, it is likely that the attendance schedule will become the absentee MPs’ perfect excuse, where they will conveniently and openly excuse themselves from attending the Dewan Rakyat.

What will happen if some MPs disappear from the Parliament in the three-month time period, never attending any of the sessions? If they can betray the people’s mandate like this, what more can the rakyat hope for from their reforms?

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