PN reveals Johari’s letters on Bersatu MPs seat vacancies

As this matter is sub judice, the Speaker refrained from making a ruling that could interfere with the court’s judgment

(NST) – Perikatan Nasional (PN) has disclosed letters from the Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul, explaining the decision on the seat vacancies of six Bersatu MPs.

The letters addressed to Bersatu vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee were shared within the party’s WhatsApp group.

It detailed Johari’s review of the notices of vacancies for the MPs from Bersatu which Ronald had sent last month.

The first letter concerns the case of Labuan MP Datuk Suhaili Abdul Rahman who had allegedly vacated his seat under Article 49A due to his membership in Bersatu being in dispute.

However, after reviewing the notices and responses, including the ongoing legal proceedings in the Shah Alam High Court, the Speaker decided that no vacancy had occurred.

“Due to this case being under the court’s consideration, I do not want to jeopardise the interests of the parties involved in the court case with my decision under Article 49A(3) of the Federal Constitution.

“Therefore, I find and decide that there is no vacancy of the seat under Article 49A(1) of the Federal Constitution,” the letter stated.

The legal case in question challenges Bersatu’s internal decisions and status concerning Suhaili’s membership.

As this matter is sub judice, the Speaker refrained from making a ruling that could interfere with the court’s judgment

Meanwhile, the second letter pertains to five other Bersatu MPs: Datuk Syed Hussin Hafiz Syed Abdul Fasal (Bukit Gantang), Zahari Kechik (Jeli), Mohd Azizi Abu Naim (Gua Musang), Datuk Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid (Kuala Kangsar), and Datuk Dr Zulkafperi Hanapi (Tanjong Karang).

These MPs were also alleged to have vacated their seats due to the cessation of their membership in Bersatu.

Johari reviewed the notices and responses from the MPs, and found no grounds for declaring the seats vacant under Article 49A(1) of the Federal Constitution.

“Therefore, after reviewing all the submitted documents, I find that the directives under Article 10.5 of the Bersatu Constitution are contradictory and deny the rights of the five MPs guaranteed under the Federal Constitution, the Standing Orders of the Dewan Rakyat, and the Parliament (Privileges and Powers) Act 1952.

“These three legislations guarantee the privileges, freedom of speech, debate, and voting for the Members of Parliament.

“Regarding the letter of application by Bersatu for the five MPs to return to the opposition seats in the Dewan Rakyat, I still find that as of today, they remain seated in the opposition bloc,” Johari said.

Earlier, Perikatan Nasional chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin confirmed that the six seats of Bersatu rebels will not be vacated despite a notice issued by the party.

Muhyiddin said Bersatu had received a letter yesterday evening from Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul, which stated that the seat would not be vacated.