KUALA LUMPUR: The Supply Bill 2010 which scraped through with a majority of three votes at 11.20pm on Monday should serve as a lesson to both Barisan Nasional and the Opposition Members of Parliament, said Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia.
He said Barisan MPs should not take it for granted that all Bills would be passed without problem even if they skipped attendance in the House.
Pandikar also questioned the move by Opposition MPs in attempting to defeat the Budget.
“We have almost come to the end of the Budget debate. What is your motive for doing that? What can you achieve with that? Do you want a fresh election?” said Pandikar Amin.
While the national budget has always been passed without any glitch since Independence, Budget 2010 was passed with only three majority votes on Monday, posing the risk that allocations and expenditures prepared by the Government for next year could have been stalled if the Opposition had got its way, he said.
In western countries, Pandikar Amin said such an event could have meant a fresh election as failure to approve the national budget was tantamount to a vote of no-confidence in the government of the day.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Abd Aziz, who is also deputy whip, cautioned backbenchers to not “push their luck.”
The House is made up of 140 Barisan MPs and 82 Opposition MPs.
However, the bloc division requested to pass the Budget saw only a result of 66 for versus 63 against.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who was attending the Chung Hwa Independence School anniversary dinner at Jalan Ipoh, rushed back to Parliament when Nazri sent out a “distress call” at 8pm.
The presence of a large number of Opposition MPs, including PKR adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur), Tan Kok Wai (DAP-Cheras) and PAS president Datuk Seri Hadi Awang (PAS-Marang) late at night had alerted Nazri that something was up.
Anwar declined to answer when asked if it had been a pre-planned move by the Pakatan Rakyat to defeat the Budget.
“It will force them (the Government) to respect the Dewan and put them on the guard at all times,” he said.
PKR strategic director Tian Chua (PKR-Batu) however said it had been a “planned mission.”
tunku : definitely it was a planned mission by anwar but it was a good thing as now the BN mps won't take things for granted especially those who did not attend the sitting without reason.bn should make sure that every time there is a sitting,there should be at least 82 of its members sits in the parliament.lesson well learned.many don't know that such an event could have meant a fresh election as failure to approve the national budget was tantamount to a vote of no-confidence in the government of the day.my suggestion is that the parliament should follow office hours only(like macc interrogation's timing).mp's are human too and have many other responsibilities or urgent matter to attend to.so only office hours for them in the parliament.