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PM: No need for emergency session of Parliament (read here)
By Andrew Ong & Syed Jaymal Zahiid Sep 18, 08 2:27pm
Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim today said he has sent a letter to Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi asking him to convene an emergency session of Parliament for an emergency motion to debate on the premier's government.
"I have made a formal request to call for an emergency session in Parliament to debate a motion of no confidence against the leadership of Barisan Nasional not later than Sept 23."
Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, the Pakatan Rakyat supremo said that the opposition alliance wanted to debate on a motion of no confidence against Abdullah.He wanted the Parliament to be recalled not later than next Tuesday under the section 11(3) of the parliamentary rules. (see box)
“The standing orders are quite clear. The PM has the authority to convene an emergency session. All he needs to do is inform the speaker.
“We have given the date for the emergency session. It makes no sense for an emergency session to be held next year. We expect the prime minister to respond.”
Pakatan to decide on next move
The opposition leader said that should the prime minister refuses to recall Parliament, Pakatan will have an emergency meeting to discuss its next course of action.
Anwar also said that there was no reason why he should be arrested under the draconian Internal Security Act, which allows detention without trial.
“What we want is that MPs, including Teresa Kok, be given the right to attend Parliament on Tuesday,” he said, referring to the opposition MP who was detained under ISA last Friday.
“Politically, economically we are in a crisis, we can’t delay (the takeover). Even for the Pakatan (to rule), it is going to be tough under the current economic situation.”
He accused Abdullah of being in a state of denial. “If he doesn’t believe me, then go to Parliament,” he said.
If he wants to see the details (of the list), then convey an emergency session of parliament and he will see... If he doesn't believe me, then go to Parliament," he said.
Too volatile to wait
Anwar reiterated that he has enough defectors to take power, but claimed that they had appealed to remain anonymous for the time being to avoid being harassed.
Asked if the protracted delay in naming the defectors would affect his public image, Anwar said that it was unlikely the case.
"I said we have the list, and will share with the PM. Failing which we would go to Parliament. What else do you want me to do? You want me to name the list now and let them get harassed?
"You know the system, and then you tell me that we should get guards to protect them? They appealed to me: Do not announce the list until we appear together. That's what they said," he said.
He stressed that alleged defectors wanted a guarantee of their safety before being made public.
Asked why he could not wait until Oct 13 when Parliament is set to reconvene, Anwar said that the political and economic situation in the country was too volatile to wait.
"How long can you wait? What are the new visions and economic plans for this period? Any responsible government should at least have a task force to deal with the economic crisis.
"They don't have any. (But) we will deal with this immediately. Tomorrow if possible," he said.
The press conference was also attended by PAS secretary-general Kamaruddin Jaaffar and DAP central executive committee member Anthony Loke.
Pakatan to meet on next move: Anwar (read here)