KUALA LUMPUR, June 4 — DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng has slammed Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun, saying that the suspension of Parliament has nothing to do with winning the battle against Covid-19.
In a statement, Lim said Azhar had ignored facts and figures, as well as science and data which does not support the premise that an Emergency Proclamation and suspension of Parliament helps Malaysia overcome the pandemic.
“When the Emergency was declared on January 12, there were 3,309 daily infections and a cumulative 141,533 cases, four daily deaths and a cumulative death toll of 559. On June 3, there were 8,209 daily infections with a cumulative 595,374 cases, 103 daily deaths and a cumulative death toll of 3,096.
“Nearly five months after the Emergency was declared on January 12, the death toll has gone up more than five times whilst infections have gone up by more than four times, demolishing completely the fallacious claim that suspending Parliament can help to contain Covid-19,” said Lim.
He added that ever since Deputy Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said broke rank and demanded Parliamentary meetings be allowed to reconvene, Azhar’s actions in attacking critics of the ongoing Emergency serves the purpose of gaining political mileage.
“Azhar claimed he was not a politician and did not have any political ambitions or populism, and unlike his critics understood the concept of the division of powers, as enshrined in the ‘little thing’ known in the Constitution,” Lim said.
Lim said that Azhar had contradicted himself when he justified the suspension of Parliament by the Executive as constitutional and legitimate, as previous videos posted by Azhar before stressed repeatedly that Parliament is supreme.
“For a Parliament Speaker to justify the derogation or diminution of powers of Parliament in deference to the Executive, is not just irresponsible and an abdication of powers but also an act of constitutional treachery.
“This defence of the current Perikatan Nasional (PN) government is nothing more than opportunistic political posturing, conflicting and irreconcilable to his role as Speaker of Parliament to uphold, protect and defend the supremacy of Parliament,” he said.
He added that Azhar had completely ignored the public statement made by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, where the Agong stated that the Emergency does not prevent Parliament from sitting to conduct normal parliamentary business.
In the same statement, Lim went on to say that the PN whole-of-government’s failure to manage Covid-19 is not limited to just double-standards in enforcing the movement control order (MCO) restrictions between VIPs and the ordinary rakyat nor on PN’s serial policy flip-flops and Covid-19 SOP u-turns.