Ismail Sabri: Anti-party hopping law does not apply to senators


Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob speaks during a Dewan Negara sitting at Parliament August 9, 2022. – Bernama photo

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 9): The Constitution (Amendment) (No.3) Bill that prohibits Members of Parliament from switching parties does not apply to senators or the members of Dewan Negara.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob when tabling the bill for the second reading at the Dewan Negara today said the matter was agreed upon by the Special Select Committee after taking into consideration several inputs.

“This is because there are two categories of members of Dewan Negara, namely those appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and those selected by their State based on their membership in the State Legislative Assembly representing their respective political parties.

“Therefore, the provision to ban party-hopping at this level does not apply to the members of Dewan Negara, taking into consideration several aspects of the legislation at the state level, other than the fact that it requires consultation and consent from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong if it involves members who were appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

“All senators and other stakeholders would be provided with explanation through an engagement session first before the amendment to the Constitution on party-hopping be made for members of Dewan Negara,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister reiterated the government’s commitment to ensuring political stability and preventing the country from facing a continuous political crisis through the tabling of the bill.

He said he was also confident that the amendment bill was also capable of stopping any elected representative from changing parties without any valid or reasonable excuse, hence ensuring political stability in the country for the long run.

“I have high hope that the bill will be supported and passed unanimously by the members of the Dewan Negara in the spirit of Keluarga Malaysia.

“This bill is indeed a historic political milestone for the country as it is formulated through consultation and discussions between the two blocs – the government and the opposition,” he said.

On July 28, the constitutional amendment dubbed the anti-hopping bill was passed by the Dewan Rakyat after it received two-thirds majority support from the members through a bloc voting. – Bernama