Malaysia Chronicle

Malaysia’s lower house parliament building is seen in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Monday, July 13, 2020. Malaysian new Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin narrowly won a motion to boot the parliament speaker Monday, scraping through the first test of his support nearly five months after he took power. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

‘Big mistake’ to pass article 10 amendment, says Undi18

YOUTH movement Undi18 has objected to Putrajaya’s move to amend article 10 of the Federal Constitution, which touches on freedom of association, saying that it gives the government of the day too much power.

In a statement, Undi18 said although the constitutional amendment was to enable the enactment of the anti-party hopping law, the amendments on article 10 raises a number of major issues that will have long-term implications for the health of Malaysia’s democracy.

“The amendment to article 10 of the Federal Constitution gives the government of the day broad powers to determine party membership for MPs, thus paving the way to abuse of power.”

“The article 10 amendment is not specific to the issue of party hopping and would provide a “blank cheque” to any incoming government to control the participation of MPs and state assemblymen in political parties.”

“For example, it is not impossible if rules are put in place to expel politicians from political parties if they have been sued or detained by the police under any act determined by the government,” it said.

It said constitutional amendments are still required for article 48, where there are reasons why a member of the House may be deprived of his parliamentary seat.

“Without amendments to article 48, any anti-party hopping bill that forces MPs to vacate their seats is still unconstitutional.

“The amendment to article 10 is not able to prevent events such as the fall of the Pakatan Harapan government (Sheraton Move) and the fall of the Perikatan Nasional government from recurring. Both of these incidents were due to government political parties choosing to change direction and leave the government,” it explained.

The youth-based movement said that it supported Bersih 2.0 and Pengerang MP Azalina Said Othman’s proposal for a “recall election” as a solution that is more viable.

“In conclusion, it would be a big mistake if the constitutional amendment to article 10 is passed,” it said.

Following a leak of the latest proposed constitutional amendment to only article 10, Perikatan Nasional and PAS have stated that they will support the bill when it is tabled in Parliament on Monday.

A constitutional amendment would require votes from two-thirds of MPs in order for it to pass.

Some Pakatan Harapan MPs, however, are in disagreement with the latest version of the proposed amendment.



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