Opposition MPs question the reason for Speaker’s post to be vacated

KUALA LUMPUR: The Dewan Rakyat sitting saw a heated exchange among the lawmakers when the opposition questioned Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s move in tabling the motion for Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof to vacate his position as the Dewan Rakyat Speaker.

As soon as Deputy Speaker Datuk Rashid Hasnon decided that the government and the opposition could have only two representatives each to debate the motion, several opposition lawmakers stood up questioning the reason for the motion to be tabled in the first place.

Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim also sought an explanation from the prime minister on why Mohamad Ariff should vacate his post.

“If we already have a Speaker with credibility and good track record, a motion to remove him must have a strong reason…to replace him on the ground that there is a new candidate is unreasonable, very unreasonable.

“I want to stress that we can consider it if the PM can give a strong reason on why the excellent Speaker should be removed,” the Port Dickson Member of Parliament said.

Several other opposition leaders, including Gobind Singh Deo (PH-Puchong), Khalid Abdul Samad (PH-Shah Alam) and Datuk Mahfuz Omar (PH- Pokok Sena) also questioned the motion all at the same time and got themselves into a heated argument with the backbenchers who defended it.