Dewan Rakyat speaker confirms PM seeking his and deputy Nga’s removal

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Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof speaks at Parliament April 9, 2019. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof speaks at Parliament April 9, 2019. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 — Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof tonight confirmed Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is seeking to replace him as Dewan Rakyat Speaker.

Ariff who was appointed Dewan Rakyat Speaker by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition when it came to power in 2018 added that the prime minister submitted a motion to his office for both his removal and that of his deputy Nga Kor Ming who is also Teluk Intan MP.

“Yes. Don’t ask me anymore. Please ask the PM and the Law Minister for further details,” Ariff who is not an MP told Malay Mail when contacted for comment.

The law portfolio is currently held by Kota Baru MP Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan from PAS. The Islamist party is allied with Muhyiddin’s Bersatu under the Perikatan Nasional banner.

Ariff added that he is also not troubled by the motion and is very much “relaxed”.

The motion to remove Ariff and Nga was first reported earlier today by vernacular paper Nanyang Siang Pau, and is scheduled to be tabled on July 13 when the Dewan Rakyat reconvenes.

News portal Malaysiakini separately reported Nga saying the motion will be dealt with fairly, according to parliamentary rules, although it bucked convention and created an unprecedented move in the prime minister asking to replace a sitting speaker and his deputy at the same time.

Nga was reported saying the Federal Constitution only allows a speaker or deputy speaker to be replaced when the position is vacant, whether through death, resignation, or the dissolution of Parliament.

He told Malaysiakini that none of the scenarios applied in the present situation, adding that their replacement could only be decided by a House vote and not by the prime minister.

“Only the Dewan Rakyat has the power to do that. Whatever the motion, whether it is to replace the speaker or freeze a parliamentary convention, it must be brought to the House for a vote.

“Our position is simple, we will respect the decision made by the Dewan Rakyat. If the house wants us to remain, we will remain. If it wants us to leave, we will leave. Everything will be done in accordance with the Constitution and parliamentary rules,” Nga was quoted saying.