Tend to your own backyard first, Umno’s Ahmad Maslan tells home minister after Sosma Bill defeat

(MMO) – Pontian MP Datuk Ahmad Maslan said Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin should not attempt to pass the blame on Umno for the government’s failure to secure sufficient vote to pass the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma) last week.

Instead, the secretary-general for both Umno and Barisan Nasional (BN) said Hamzah, who is from Bersatu, should ask himself why his party president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is Pagoh MP, and party colleague Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan, who is Alor Gajah MP, were absent when the bloc vote was taking place in the Dewan Rakyat, Utusan Malaysia reported today.

“Hamzah should ask where did Muhyiddin Yassin go? Where was Alor Gajah (Redzuan)? If these two were there they would’ve won.

“So blame Bersatu, why blame Umno? He said maybe MPs don’t like to see his face. This is a personal matter which I can’t be bothered to entertain,” Ahmad was quoted saying, referring to Hamzah’s terse reply last Friday.

He said the failure to pass the Bill shouldn’t be placed squarely on Umno MPs, adding that those absent during voting had strong reasons not to be there.

“Bersatu doesn’t support Umno. We just competed at the polls and Bersatu has yet to support the current deputy speaker from Cameron Highlands who is an Umno man and we know the one making these decisions is Hamzah,” Ahmad was quoted saying.

Last week, Dewan Rakyat failed to approve a motion to extend the effective period of sub-section 4 (5) of Sosma for another five years.

The motion was rejected after the result of a bloc vote where 84 MPs supported its extension versus 86 MPs who did not. This was amended later to 85.

Hamzah has since said he will retable the motion in Parliament for a fresh vote.

Ahmad was among the 50 MPs absent during the voting process. He has claimed not to know a vote on the Bill would be taken that day.

Decided to plan son’s wedding instead

He reiterated that stance today, adding that he was not going to debate the bill since the MoU was in place.

“There had never been a vote before this, so in my heart I said there wouldn’t be a vote. So I went out and started to work on my plans for my son’s wedding last Saturday and Sunday,” he was quoted as saying by Utusan Malaysia.

Several BN MPs have demanded Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob review the government’s stand on the Memorandum of Understanding with Pakatan Harapan after the Opposition bloc rejected the motion brought by Hamzah to extend sub-section 4(5), which is a 28-day detention period, for another five years starting July 17, 2022.

Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has called on his party and the BN coalition to break free from the political agreement inked with Pakatan Harapan after the Opposition voted against the bill.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of law Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said that the MoU between the government and the Opposition bloc still stands despite what happened.