Shafie chastises Harapan for inking deal with govt after ‘stolen mandate’
Mohd Shafie Apdal (Warisan-Semporna) has chastised Pakatan Harapan for signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the federal government.
He said Harapan and its allies had their mandate, as federal government, stolen in the Sheraton Move last year by the same parties they now seek to work with.
“Yes, we agreed (the mandate was stolen) and yet, now, we are working with them. We signed a memorandum with them.
“Where are the values in our life? As a leader and a politician in this country, we have to have clarity.
“I don’t want, at the end of the day, if the government of the day fails and I signed that memorandum, (it will mean) I also failed,” said Shafie during his speech in the Dewan Rakyat today.
He said even if he doesn’t sign the MOU, that doesn’t mean he does not care for the country or its people.
It also wouldn’t mean he is damaging the country’s unity, he added.
The Warisan president explained that the priority should always be the country and its people but many are now driven by “greed and lust” for positions.
“I could have been there if I wanted to. But is that the values that I have?” Shafie said.
He said he was even willing to topple his own brother Yusof Apdal – who remained with Umno after Shafie was suspended from the party – in the 14th general election (GE14), all for the sake of the country.
Yusof has since joined Warisan after GE14.
Shafie asserted that the root cause of the current instability in the country’s political landscape was due to the rakyat’s mandate being stolen.
This, he said, has led to too much concern over who has the “numbers” to gain power.
“We are playing with numbers for human lives in this country,” Shafie said.
He was speaking in agreement with Azalina Othman Said (BN-Pengerang) who spoke in Parliament of the need for some sort of anti-hopping law.
Azalina Othman Said (BN-Pengerang)
Shafie suggested for the anti-hopping law to have punishments for MPs who have “party hopped”, such as being suspended from contesting in an election for a certain number of terms.
“Or suspension for life so they cannot contest in politics anymore, as they have set a bad example to the people of the country,” he said.
Azalina earlier suggested that the anti-hopping law must give voters the power to decide the fate of the MPs who have left their party.
On Monday, Harapan and the federal government, as led by Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, signed a deal dubbed the ‘Memorandum of Understanding on Transformation and Political Stability’.
The deal saw Ismail Sabri’s government promising to implement a slew of institutional reforms.
In return, Harapan offered a conditional promise not to oust the prime minister from the government and to support Budget 2022.
In a speech, Lim Guan Eng (Harapan-Bagan) defended the signing of the MOU, saying they are still playing the role of the opposition.
“If the government did something wrong, we will criticise. If there is corruption, wastage, the opposition will never let that go.
“Do not think that just because we signed the MOU, we gave them a free pass. No, no, no, we are still the opposition,” Lim said.
He also brought up the help that the public will get from that deal, in which the government agreed to a RM45 billion fiscal injection to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
MOU not a free pass, Guan Eng tells government
THE bipartisan memorandum of understanding (MOU) is not a free pass from the opposition to the government, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng reminded the government.
“Do not think just because we have signed the MOU, we have given (you) a free pass. No, no, no. We will still play our role of keeping checks and balances as the opposition,” Lim (Bagan-PH) said when debating the Royal Address in the Dewan Rakyat today.
“If you are wrong, we will correct. If you stray, we will bring you back to the right path. That is the role of the opposition, which we will continue to play,” he added.
He said the MOU – signed by Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Pakatan Harapan party heads on Monday – will be cancelled if the government fails to keep to its terms.
“If it is not fulfilled, then it will be cancelled automatically. We are sincere and honest. We want attention to be given towards the fight against Covid-19 and to save the economy,” Lim said.
He said the government accepted some of the proposals mooted by PH, including the waiver of interest payments for bank loan moratoriums for low-income groups, and injecting another RM45 billion to the Covid-19 fund.
Lim said all these would not have happened if not for the MOU, which covers parliamentary and institutional reforms, including giving the opposition a greater say in consultations on government bills before they are tabled.
As for legislative improvements, Ismail proposed that all bills be tabled, discussed, and mutually agreed upon in Parliament.
The government has also promised to deliver three major reforms by the middle of next year, before the next or fifth session of Parliament.
These are the anti-party hopping law, the implementation of Undi18 and automatic voter registration, and to amend the Federal Constitution to limit the term of the prime minister to 10 years.
Equal funding will be provided to government MPs and their opposition counterparts covered by the MOU, while the office of the opposition leader will be raised in status, facilities and allowances.
One of the terms in exchange, is not to dissolve Parliament before July 31, 2022. TMI
MKINI / THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT