Abdullah to ask King to dissolve Parliament tomorrow?

This may be the last day that I am speaking as Parliamentary Opposition Leader for the 11th Parliament if the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in his audience with the Yang di Pertuan Agong tomorrow before the weekly Cabinet meeting asks for the dissolution of Parliament – which would also mean the last Cabinet meeting tomorrow.

This will be most unfortunate for the Prime Minister would be showing scant respect and sensitivity to Pai Tiang Gong on the ninth day and Chap Goh Mei on the 15th day of the Chinese New Year – another offense and insensitivity to the diverse cultures and religions in Malaysia in a matter of three months after the holding of the Umno general assembly on Deepavali last November.

Last Monday, I received a notice from Parliament calling for oral and written questions for the first meeting of the fourth session of the 11th Parliament, which will be declared open by the Yang di Pertuan Agong on 17th March 2008, giving MPs the deadline of February 22 to submit their written and oral questions for the 22-day sitting of Parliament till April 24, 2008.

It is a waste of public funds, resources and time for Parliament to rush out parliamentary notice for the March 17-April 24, 2008 to all MPs by pos laju when it is clear the 11th Parliament will not sit again in March.

It is also ridiculous to expect MPs to prepare and submit questions by Feb. 22 for the March 17-April 24, 2008 parliamentary meeting, when everybody expects a dissolution if not tomorrow at least latest by the third week of February.

I call on the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to make a clear-cut public announcement whether Parliament will be dissolved for general election to be held before March 17, so that MPs, whether Barisan Nasional or Opposition, need not waste time preparing and submitting parliamentary questions for a parliamentary meeting that would not be held.

Something is very wrong with Abdullah’s system of governance if he cannot make such a simple clarification.

One of the trademarks which Abdullah wants his premiership to be identified is to transform Malaysia from a “First-World Infrastructure, Third-World Mentality” to “First-World Infrastructure, First-World Mentality” nation.

In the past 51 months of his premiership however, Abdullah’s call for “ first-world infrastructure, first-world mentality” had fallen on deaf ears and had remained at the sloganeering level – as there was no serious venture to translate it into action with new government benchmark and a new national ethos.

In my first speech when I returned to Parliament in May 2004, I stressed that parliamentary reform and modernization is the first critical test whether there is the political will to transform Malaysia into a first-world nation, not only in infrastructure, but in mentality, mindset and culture starting with a First World Parliament.

In the past four years, Parliament has failed on both counts. Over RM100 million was spent to give it a “five-star hotel” glitzy appearance but it still leaks cats and dogs when there is a heavy downpour – even when Parliament is meeting!

But in terms of substance in moving towards a First-World Parliament in the past four years, the report card is a dismal failure.

In my first speech on my return to Parliament on 20th May 2004 during the debate on the Royal Address, I listed 12 proposals for Malaysia to have a “First World Parliament” not only in infrastructure, but mindset, culture, practices and performance, viz:

• live telecast of parliamentary proceedings;
• daily two-hour question time;
• Prime Minister’s Question Time twice a week;
• Opposition MP heading the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).
• some 30 specialist Parliamentary Select Committees with a Select Committee for every Ministry;
• about ten general Parliamentary Select Committees to produce annual reports on progress, trends and recommendations on national integrity, IT, women’s agenda, environment, mass media, corruption, etc;
• allocation of certain days a week specifically to deal with Opposition business;
• research and constituency staffing for MPs.
• an Opposition Deputy Speaker
• modernization and democratization of Standing Orders
• code of ethics for all MPs.
• Ministers’ Parliamentary code of conduct

The 11th Parliament has failed each of these 12 tests of modernization and reform because of the utter lack of leadership by the Prime Minister. In fact, in his four years as Prime Minister, Abdullah has the dubious distinction of registering the lowest parliamentary attendance for any Prime Minister in Malaysian parliamentary history despite having the most number of Ministerial portfolios!

The failure of the 11th Parliament must be rectified in the new 12 Parliament to be elected soon.
It is only by having at least 75 Opposition MPs, which will also deny the Barisan Nasional its unbroken and suffocating two-thirds parliamentary majority, that there could be any surety that serious efforts would be initiated for parliamentary modernization and reform to usher in a First-World Parliament.

This is another reason why I am calling on the 11 million voters in the upcoming general election to elect at least 75 Opposition MPs to ensure that Malaysia has a “First-World Parliament” to give new meaning to democracy in Malaysia.

  1. #1 by Short-sleeve on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 12:47 pm

    Ohhh …. here comes the carrot from BN.

  2. #2 by xpainxgain on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 1:26 pm

    No matter how, Pak Lah will consult the opinion from 4th floor guy.

  3. #3 by gofortruth on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 2:36 pm

    Last Monday, I received a notice from Parliament calling for oral and written questions for the first meeting of the fourth session of the 11th Parliament, which will be declared open by the Yang di Pertuan Agong on 17th March 2008 – Kit

    Do you think our Agong dare to say no to Pak Lah?

  4. #4 by grace on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 3:55 pm

    Let him dissolve the parliament. It will work for your party.

  5. #5 by voice on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 4:09 pm

    It doesn’t matter when is the election day, my vote will still be with DAP, it is about Malaysians VS BN (team of corrupted people).

  6. #6 by smeagroo on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 4:24 pm

    How many times hv sleepy head walked into parlaiment even in his sleep last year? 3 times? 4 times? Might as well hv parlaiment move to his bedroom.

  7. #7 by malaysia_mana_boleh on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 5:04 pm

    Who cares when he dissolve Parliament. The sooner the better.

    Can’t wait to cross X for DAP

    Let’s do our role as citizens of this country and defenders of our children’s future by kicking this corrupt government out for the first time!!!!!!!



  8. #8 by HJ Angus on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 5:10 pm

    I agree to the 12 items but would also include

    1.Declaration of assets of Cabinet Ministers and Deputy Ministers to Parliament.

    2.Formation of more joint committes similar to the PAC but with more authority to take action when necessary.

    At the moment, Parliament is more like a circus with the Speaker acting like a cheap ring-master.

  9. #9 by Rocky on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 5:18 pm

    I think YB is going to far with saying it insulting Chap Go Mei la and eveything else. It is not like he is asking for polling on those dates or it is like on CNY 1st day.

    It is his right when to call for dissolution and we have to respect that. He is working with the systems that is in place. Nothing hanky panky there and he needs all the adavantage he can get which DAP will also do, get an advantage.

    But that said, Pak Lah will not going to have a good time regardless what his feung sui master says. he is going to get whacked cos I’m more keen on what he has not delivered and his poor leadership.

    come on Pak Lah, make it soon, I can’t wait to vote against you!!!

  10. #10 by boh-liao on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 6:28 pm

    Why do you expect AAB to understand and respect Pai Tiang Gong and Chap Goh Mei? He may have some Chinese blood in his body, but Pai Tiang Gong and Chap Goh Mei are alien to him.

  11. #11 by boh-liao on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 7:00 pm

    The current Parliament is about 4 years old. If it were dissolved on 13 Feb 2008, MPs would have served less than 5 years.

    Will an MP, who served about 4 years and chose to step down or failed to be elected, be entitled to life-long pension?

  12. #12 by HJ Angus on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 7:29 pm

    IIANM the term as MP is counted as long as you are there when P is dissolved.

    In a way, the Government is increasing our financial burden by creating more pensioners (from MPs) by 20% – that is by producing those entitlements every 4 years instead of 5 years.

    I support the idea to have elections at defined intervals and we can reduce the rigmarole of “getting inspired”. So Much TIME WASTING.

  13. #13 by limkamput on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 9:28 pm

    Sometimes i think it is better not to make precise prediction knowing that they can actually frustrate us. If we make too many wrong predictions, we lose credibility.

  14. #14 by wizzerd on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 10:33 pm

    7 votes in my family go to DAP..let’s make the swing to win over Penang a reality

  15. #15 by BlackEye on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 10:40 pm

    “Sometimes i think it is better not to make precise prediction knowing that they can actually frustrate us. If we make too many wrong predictions, we lose credibility.”

    Are you suggesting that YB Kit has been reduced to forecasting events, that he is looking forward to be a fortune teller once he retires??

    He is too smart to be doing all that! What he is doing here is to put Abdullah Badawi and UMNO/MCA in a fix i.e. if they do as YB Kit suggests it gives the perception of weakness on UMNO/MCA’s part, and if they don’t it shows their lack of consideration for the culture of the Chinese whose support their partner MCA is now desperately seeking.

  16. #16 by choonchoy on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 11:07 pm

    “First-World Infrastructure, Third-World Mentality”

    Non-sense. What 1st-world infrastructure? 1st world leaking roofs, 1st world falling ceilings, 1st world water supply that you cannot drink without having filtered it twice and boiled. 1st world traffic light system which is sure to fail after it rains. Thousands of RM spent to upgrade the traffic lights to LEDs cause it doesn’t burn out but unfortunately it doesn’t light up??? Roads with potholes(which bust my rear left tyre last week). Our dear PM doesn’t know what he’s talking about. 1st world infrastructure only comes from 1st world education, 1st world mentality and most importantly 1st world leardership!

  17. #17 by HJ Angus on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 11:08 pm

    After all the revelations at the RCI, the correct and proper thing for the authorities to do would be to complete the inquiry and then let the public see what actions will be taken.

    Delaying the GE would enable voters decide if the authorities are really serious and sincere about curbing crime.
    Unless of course, the AG issues some arrest warrants within a month of the close of the inquiry.


  18. #18 by ZhouYu on Wednesday, 13 February 2008 - 2:46 am

    I don’t think it’s BN’s nature to bow down to pressures from the Opposition just to confirm if they are not going to dissolve Parliament between now and Chap Goh Meh. No matter how much you pressure them, they’re not going to give an answer on when the next GE *is not* going to be held.

    I already got the feeling since 2 GE ago that the next GE is going to be held before Anwar can qualify as a candidate. With the current events within UMNO itself, I am wondering if Pak Lah is going to delay it until Anwar qualifies.

  19. #19 by caishen on Wednesday, 13 February 2008 - 7:49 am

    “First-Class Leadership, LKS Mentality”
    Everything will go orderly;No corruptions, No hanky-panky, No Semi-Value property,No 4th Floor Control Tower!!

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