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Opposition staging walkout on motion of thanks disrespectful, says Anwar

Publish date: Tue, 27 Feb 2024, 04:50 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: The opposition's act of staging a walkout while the Prime Minister was delivering his speech to congratulate His Majesty Sultan Ibrahim's appointment as the new King of Malaysia is "disrespectful" to the royal institution.

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said he strongly opposed the opposition bloc, who left the Dewan Rakyat en masse, in protest over his "sudden" motion to congratulate the new King and thank the previous one, Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah.

"(My speech) has nothing to do with Sultan Ibrahim's royal address (in the Parliament opening ceremony yesterday).

"I was supposed to come (to Parliament) this morning, but there was an official visit by the Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet.

"That is why I had requested to present my speech at 2.30pm, because the programme with the Cambodian Prime Minister ended at 1.45pm," he explained.

Earlier, a ruckus erupted in Dewan Rakyat after the Perikatan Nasional (PN) chief whip Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan questioned the government's sudden motion of thanks for the King, saying that they were not informed of the matter.

Takiyuddin also said that such changes in the proceedings would interfere with the debate on the royal address scheduled to take place among lawmakers.

The opposition lawmakers present in the lower house then staged the walkout after Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul allowed Anwar to continue his speech.

Anwar, who is also Tambun MP, said his motion was based on Parliamentary Standing Orders 14(i) and 14(j), and took into account matters that should be prioritised.

"It is illogical to only thank the former Agong at the end of the Parliament session.

"I agree that it should be done this morning, but for the opposition to oppose (this motion), it shows that they do not respect the royal institution.

"They can oppose the process, but we will continue to defend it as the Dewan Rakyat Speaker has made a decision (to allow the motion).

"This is the problem with our country. Even after the King's address yesterday, they (the opposition) still don't get it because of seething resentment and jealousy," he added.

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