Speaker rejects Pua’s bid for special 1MDB panel

(FMT) – Damansara MP Tony Pua’s proposal for a special committee to monitor the recovery of 1MDB-related cash and assets was rejected today by Dewan Rakyat Speaker Azhar Harun.

Pua had proposed to amend the motion of thanks for the royal address, proposed by Ahmad Maslan (BN-Pontian). However, the Speaker ruled that Pua’s proposed amendment had nothing to do with Ahmad’s motion.

Towards the end of today’s proceedings in the House, Pua said he had been notified of the rejection of his proposed amendment.

He argued that the Standing Orders did not state that any proposed amendments to a motion must be related to the motion.

“In other parliaments like in UK, Canada and Australia, there are many instances where proposals to amend a motion was made and left to the house to decide. I can accept if the house rejects the proposal but a decision has to be made by the house,” Pua contended.

But Azhar disagreed, insisting the proposal had nothing to do with the motion and read out the Standing Orders which guided his decision to reject Pua’s proposal. He said the proposal should be done through a private motion.

“Even though it is a motion of thanks to the King, not everything in the motion can be amended otherwise anything can be amended as the King’s speech covers all issues.

“I’m sorry YB, my decision is final,” he said, and adjourned the sitting for the day.

Last week, Pua had said that there were fears that Malaysia may end up being shortchanged in the government’s settlements with various parties in relation to 1MDB and SRC International.

Malaysia recently announced a US$3.9 billion (RM16.4 billion) settlement with international bankers Goldman Sachs to resolve outstanding charges and claims related to three bond transactions.

The settlement would result in more than US$4.5 billion (RM18.9 billion) being returned to Malaysia. However, Pua said the former attorney-general had originally demanded US$7.5 billion from the investment company.