All MPs should be given the freedom and space to make their stand whether to support, reject or abstain during the 2021 Budget vote next week, said a senior Umno leader.
Expressing his views today, Umno Vice President Mohamed Khaled Nordin said, there is no reason why MPs are urged to hold elections in bloc (group) when the current Perikatan Nasional (PN) government is not formed through official, orderly and tidy cooperation.
“On that basis, I believe every member of parliament should be given the freedom and space to make choices and vote personally based on conscience to support, abstain or reject the 2021 Budget,” he said.
The issue of Budget 2021 is increasingly attracting the attention of many as his fate will determine the life of the PN government and the position of Muhyiddin Yassin as prime minister.
While the actual position of support received by the Pagoh MP as prime minister continues to be in question, there are at least two different groups in Umno.
While some of them offered conditional support to the government – and were ridiculed by PAS leaders as implementing the story of Puteri Gunung Ledang – others insisted they wanted their party to support the budget.
Among the senior figures who want MPs to be given the freedom to make choices is Gua Musang Member of Parliament, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
BN secretary Annuar Musa said the statement made by Tengku Razaleigh was personal because according to the whip system, MPs must make a stand based on instructions issued such as supporting all bills brought by the government.
Mohamed Khaled said en bloc support for a parliamentary motion did not necessarily reflect the party’s strength.
On the other hand, said the former Johor menteri besar, the party will be considered to have no diversity of ideas, diversity of stance and freedom to express a democratic stance.
According to him, if a member of parliament is confident that the provisions and initiatives in Budget 2021 require improvement or do not meet the interests of the target group, they should state the stance even if it is different from the stance of the party or en bloc.
“Different stance is not treason but according to foolishness is as great as treachery.
“People do not elect a member of parliament to be a separate representative from the pulse of their voters,” he said.
Add Mohamed Khaled The 2021 Budget has many benefits but it also needs reorganization to make it better.
“God willing, if it is done, MPs will use their good conscience to vote democratically for the benefit of the people and the country,” he said.