KUALA LUMPUR: Dewan Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia has shrugged off the protests of opposition MPs who called him a “bloody fool”, saying that most of them are fools as well.
“If they want to accuse me of being a bloody fool, then (by) their arguments in the last nine years, most of them are bloody fools,” he told reporters when met at the Parliament building here today.
Pandikar has been under fire for deferring the debate on PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang’s motion to table a private member’s bill to amend the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965, also known as Act 355.
Pandikar stopped the debate after PAS secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan explained his party’s reasons for tabling the bill, which seeks to increase the shariah courts’ punitive powers.
“If you have power, you are powerful; if you don’t use your power, you are a bloody fool. Today, I don’t want to be a bloody fool,” Pandikar had said.
Opposition MPs retaliated, saying Pandikar’s decision was proof enough that he was indeed a bloody fool.
“Since I have the power, I didn’t want to sit down and listen to arguments I’ve heard before, which sometimes don’t make sense,” Pandikar said today.
“If I didn’t exercise (my power), I would have had to sit for another six hours and endure MPs such as Lim Kit Siang.
“He (Lim) is supposed to be a leader of a political party for such a long time, and he doesn’t know the Dewan’s decorum?”
Pandikar also rubbished the opposition’s claim that his decision was politically motivated and had been planned beforehand.
“When they (the MPs) are debating, they are motivated by political agenda. I don’t have any. I just have to make sure every proceeding goes on smoothly.
“It’s up to anyone to slam (my actions). I don’t care at all, as long as the proceedings go smoothly.”
When asked why yesterday’s session ended abruptly, Pandikar said he was concerned for the Dewan Rakyat staff who had stayed up until 5am that day.
This was due to the government’s request to have all the bills scheduled for the current sitting tabled and debated, he added.
“All my staff slept in the Dewan. I myself slept at 5am.”