ALL eight motions filed by six members of the august House were dismissed by State Legislative Assembly (DUN) speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar during the 18th sitting of the state legislature yesterday.
Asfia ruled that the subject matters and issues raised in the motions of See Chee How (PKR-Batu Lintang), Chong Chieng Jen (DAP-Kota Sentosa) and Baru Bian (PKR-Ba Kelalan) were ‘in pari materia’ with the statement made by Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing under Standing Order 11(1)(i) read together with Standing Order 22. The Latin term ‘in pari materia’ in English means “in the same manner” or on the same subject relating to the same manner, he said.
See’s motion sought to resolve and affirm the state’s determination to uphold territorial integrity of Sarawak to revivify the state’s sovereign rights to all resources discerned therein and to assert state autonomy whereas Baru’s motion sought for the state government to take necessary measures to restore Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution to its original form in order to exert the rightful status of Sarawak as an equal partner within the Federation of Malaysia.
Chong, on the other hand, was seeking for the state government to within one year from the date of passing of his motion implement the two resolutions passed by the august House on May 6, 2014 and Dec 8, 2015.
His other motion sought for the government to cease the operation of gas fuel power generation and the state government to renegotiate with Petronas to convert the supply of 450 million standard cubic feet per day of subsidised natural gas to subsidised liquid petroleum gas of equal value to reduce the average price of liquefied petroleum gas for households and small businesses throughout Sarawak.
Asfia pointed out that the august House had passed and approved the Distribution of Gas Bill, 2016 on Monday and to allow a motion to debate on this same-subject matter which was passed and approved by the august House was tantamount to re-opening and rescinding the Bill passed and violated Standing Order 32(3); thus dismissing the motion.
Asfia also dismissed a motion by David Wong Kee Woan (DAP-Pelawan) under Standing Order 23(5) seeking for the state government to demand from the federal government funds to start a railway line to connect major cities and towns in Sarawak.
“Under Standing Order 23(5), a motion which, directly or indirectly, involves any such grant, charge, expenditure, release, remission or compensation, shall be treated as seeking grant, charge, expenditure, release, remission or compensation, unless the said Minister signifies in writing that it does not go beyond what is incidental only and not of a substantial nature having regard to the purpose of the motion,” Asfia said.
A motion from Ting Tiong Choon (DAP-Pujut) that the Ministry of Local Government provide minutes of meeting to members of the public was also thrown out.
In making his ruling, Asfia said the motion had not obtained any direction or consent from the Minister concerned to satisfy the proviso expressly stated under Section 25(3); hence it had to be rejected.
Meanwhile, Irene Chang’s (DAP-Bukit Assek) two motions seeking for an annual allocation of funds be made to all elected representatives as well as for all police stations in the state to operate round the clock were also thrown out by Asfia.
He said her motion calling for the allocation of funds did not comply with Standing Order 23(5) as the motion related to directly or indirectly seeking a grant whereas her other motion was described as ‘misconceived’ and that Chang should advise Lanang MP Alice Lau to follow up and ask for further clarification in the Parliament as security was a federal matter.-BP