PETALING JAYA: The Cabinet has asked for revisions to the anti-hopping bill, five days prior to a special Dewan Rakyat sitting on the matter, FMT has learned.
Well-placed sources also said that Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob will be chairing a meeting this Sunday about the bill.
“All the MPs and senators will be called.”
However, the tabling of a constitutional amendment related to the bill will take place on Monday, to ensure that the Anti-Hopping Act would not contravene the constitution.
“The Act itself won’t be tabled on Monday.
“Once the Federal Constitution is amended, the Act would no longer require a two-thirds majority.”
FMT was also made to understand that the government is ironing out several issues, including what constitutes party hopping.
“This includes whether an elected representative who won as an independent would be party hopping if he or she joins a political party or, if an MP joins another party after being sacked by his or her party.”
A federal minister who did not wish to be named also said that the government wanted to iron out pertinent matters like the definition of “hopping”.
Another minister, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, said the government had no plans to abandon the bill.
He added that the amendment of Clause 10 of the Federal Constitution to enable the government to introduce the anti-hopping bill must be done first.
“We are all for it. People are so engrossed with the anti-hopping bill that they have forgotten that we should start with the amendment to the Federal Constitution first.
“Once approved then we can introduce the anti-hopping bill.”
Earlier today, DAP secretary-general Loke Siew Fook urged all political parties to state their stand if their MPs would support the anti-hopping bill in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday.
In a Facebook post, the Seremban MP pointed out that the long-awaited bill must be supported by at least 148 MPs to be passed as it requires a two-thirds majority since it involves a constitutional amendment.
The former transport minister said this after a meeting with Muda president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, who gave his commitment that he would be voting in support of the bill.
Pakatan Harapan (PH) assured prime minister Ismail yesterday that all its MPs would back the bill, while Ismail promised there will be no changes to the special sitting.
Under the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between PH and Putrajaya last year, the anti-hopping bill was supposed to be tabled in the first Dewan Rakyat meeting of this year, which ended last month.
However, the Cabinet decided that the bill still required further deliberation through engagement sessions with other stakeholders particularly Barisan Nasional and Perikatan Nasional to ensure the amendments get their support in the Dewan Rakyat.
We are live on Telegram, subscribe here for breaking news and the latest announcements.