Malaysia Chronicle

It is not easy for the government to table and pass the anti-party hopping bill as the cabinet also consists of “political frogs”, Umno veteran Shahrir Samad said today.

“The 39 MPs in Parliament once left their original party in the 14th general election (GE14).

“Because they jumped, either they weren’t charged or they received better positions than when they were in their original party,” Shahrir (above) said in a Facebook post today.

Yesterday, de facto Law Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar reportedly confirmed the proposed anti-party hopping bill will not be tabled during the special parliamentary sitting next Monday (April 11).

Instead, several sources familiar with the matter told Malaysiakini the cabinet decided to table a bill to amend some parts of the Federal Constitution that would allow for “anti-hopping” legislation in the future.

Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi questioned whether the delay was due to sabotage.

Elaborating further on party hoppers benefiting after leaving Umno, Shahrir cited how Masjid Tanah MP Mas Ermieyati Samsudin and Jeli MP Mustapa Mohamed were not charged for receiving alleged 1MDB-linked funds from ex-prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, unlike those who stayed in Umno, including Shahrir himself.

Other party hoppers, he said, gained influence and power after making the jump from Umno.

Home Minister Hamzah Zainuddin

This includes Hamzah Zainudin, who is now home minister, and Latiff Ahmad, who became a minister after years of being a deputy minister while in Umno, Shahrir added.

“It’s rezeki (sustenance). Whether it was irresponsible, that’s another matter. It’s the sustenance that can’t be denied. But for now, it’s hard to agree on party hopping.

“Their principles are different. Some consider it a betrayal. Some defend it as an act of faith. But they all sit at the same table,” he added.

The anti-hopping bill, if it were passed, would trigger a by-election if an MP quits or is sacked from their party, joins a new party, or if an independent MP joins a party.

It is unclear what are the contents of the new bill to amend the Federal Constitution to make room for a future anti-hopping bill.  MKINI



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