Media statement by Chairman of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee and MP for Ipoh Timor, Wong Kah Woh on 12 January 2021:
Emergency Proclamation 2021
The Dewan Rakyat Speaker announced that all Parliamentary Committees are allowed to sit during the period of Emergency, stressing the role of check and balance by the Committees.
This is not good enough.
The Parliamentary Committees, be it the PAC or any other Select Committees, will not be able to table the Report to Parliament without the Parliament being in session. The efforts of the Committees in calling witnesses and examining evidences will be in vain if there is no final report to be tabled. The MPs will have no chance to raise, in the Parliament Chamber, on the issues highlighted in the Reports.
Further, due to the constraint of the Standing Order, all Committees meetings and hearings are not allowed to be opened. No evidence shall be divulged outside the Committees during the proceedings. This is the constraint.
We won’t be able to discharge our duty efficiently and diligently without a Parliament being in session.
What type of check and balance we are looking at now?
A sad state indeed!