Leave ‘ceramah politik’ outside Dewan, Speaker reminds MPs

02 May 2019 / 13:27 H.

GOMBAK: Lawmakers should save their political speeches for outside the Parliament, and focus their debates on issues that are beneficial for the people.

Dewan Rakyat speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof (pix) said comments and debates made in the Dewan could affect the general debates in society due to the increasing influence of electronic mainstream and social media.

He said it is pertinent for parliamentarians to lead by example and act as a “corrective mechanism” to steer debates among the public towards moderation and intellect.

This is to avoid the society from inclining towards divisiveness, he added.

“While we applaud and promote openness and freedom of expression, it should be understood within the constraints of the law, the truth and good conduct, which great scholars termed as ‘adab’ (manners),” he said in his opening speech at the “GE14 and the Year Since” seminar, here, today.

“Parliamentary privileges must not go beyond these bounds, and be used as an instrument to sow hate, division and extremism.

“I have, both in and outside the Dewan, remarked that the parliamentary process requires proper parliamentary behaviour and decorum, and a respect for governing rules.

“Ceramah politik (political speeches) should be left at the door of the Dewan.”

In commending efforts by the new Pakatan Harapan government to implement parliamentary reforms in its first year in power, including appointing an opposition MP as the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman, Mohamad Ariff said a lot more needed to be done, without elaborating.

He said the public should also play a more proactive role in uplifting the state of the Parliament today by making their voices heard to their respective lawmakers.

“MPs are there to represent the voters’ voice. Get to know your respective lawmakers and let them know what the people’s concerns are, in the hope that it may lead to better debates and law making in Parliament,” he said.

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