KUALA LUMPUR: Umno today called for the dissolution of the Council of Eminent Persons (CEP) set up by the Pakatan Harapan government, saying its existence is no longer appropriate as a full cabinet has been established.
Umno secretary-general Annuar Musa said the CEP’s report on its recommendations should be tabled in Parliament and made public to ensure transparency.
The CEP was set up to advice the government during the initial stage of its formation, especially before the formation of the full cabinet and the first sitting of the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara.
“Now, all have taken place, and the PM (prime minister) has a formidable cabinet, comprising of the senior leaders of five parties, some of whom have been in politics for a long time.
“Based on the principle of joint responsibility within the cabinet, I feel it is no longer appropriate for the CEP to exist and the cabinet should function accordingly,” he said in a statement today.
He said the CEP had no legal and constitutional legitimacy and was not part of the legislative, executive and judiciary, and would certainly impede the system of parliamentary democracy.
The dissolution was also necessary, he said, not because of the cost factor but because almost all the members had interest in the government and there would be a conflict of interest.
Yesterday, CEP chairman Daim Zainuddin announced that the council had completed its mandate and a report of its recommendations would be submitted to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad when the latter returned from his visit to China.
Besides Daim, the other CEP members are former Bank Negara Malaysia governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz, former Petronas president and chief executive officer Mohd Hassan Marican, business tycoon Robert Kuok and economist Dr Jomo Kwame Sundaram.