Anti-hop law: No special sitting, Bill to be tabled on July 18, says Wan Junaidi

PETALING JAYA: The proposed anti-hopping Bill will be tabled when Parliament begins its scheduled meeting this July 18, says Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar.

“Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob has decided, as head of the House, that there is no need for the government to hold a special one-day Parliament sitting to table the Constitution (Amendments) 2022 Bill related to prohibition on switching parties by members of the Dewan Rakyat,” the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department said in a statement on Thursday (June 9).

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He cited several reasons why the Prime Minister decided not to hold a special one-day sitting to table the Constitutional amendments in the first week of July as proposed by the Parliamentary Special Select Committee (PSSC).

Among them was the cost of holding the special sitting and the absence of Members of Parliament (MPs) who will be abroad on official work.

“Overall, the government will have to bear an estimated cost of RM1.07mil, not including operational costs, if the special sitting is held for both the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara,” he said.

Besides this, he noted that several MPs will be overseas if the meeting is held in the first week of July as proposed by the PSSC.

“As an example, the special select committee on finance and economy including the committee on security will be away between early and mid-July,” he added.

Wan Junaidi also noted that the coming Parliament meeting has been scheduled to begin on July 18.

He said the proposed Bill will be tabled at the meeting and assured that ample time would be given to debate and pass the proposed law.

On Wednesday (June 8), Wan Junaidi announced that the PSSC had finalised the draft of the proposed laws for Cabinet’s approval including a recommendation to hold a special one-day sitting in the first week of July for the purpose.

The Dewan Rakyat is scheduled to meet from July 18 till Aug 4.

Last Tuesday (June 2), Wan Junaidi announced that the proposed anti-hopping laws would be implemented through the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2022.

He said that there was no need for separate specific laws to deal with party hopping.

If passed, the anti hopping law could be enforced as early as September.

Among the proposed amendments is that a by-election is to be held within 60 days if an MP switches parties or voluntarily resigns from his party.

Also to be amended is Article 10 of the Federal Constitution on freedom of association, an effort to prevent party hopping.