Parliament should schedule at least two days for a special debate on the SUHAKAM report in the current meeting

Media Conference Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Friday): I have not yet read the first annual report of  SUHAKAM presented to Parliament yesterday and would not comment on it until I have read it.

I have however a preliminary comment on it. Parliament should schedule at least two days for a special debate on Suhakam report  in the current meeting to  give full meaning to the establishment of the Human Rights Commission to protect and promote human rights in Malaysia.

Parliament’s failure to have a special debate on the Suhakam report would be a  gross act of parliamentary irresponsibility and negligence, downgrading the importance of human rights in the country as well as diminishing public respect for Parliament as the highest political chamber in the land.

As the present meeting of the Dewan Rakyat ends on 3rd May 2001, it is not possible for Barisan Alternative MPs to move a motion to debate the Suhakam report as there would not be the requisite  14-day notice as required by Standing Order 27.

In the circumstances, the only avenue is for the government to agree to extend the parliamentary meeting and allocate at least two days for the debate on the Suhakam report.  There should be a conference between the Leader of the House and the Leader of the Opposition to reach agreement to schedule the special debate on the Suhakam report.


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman