PETALING JAYA: Dewan Negara president Rais Yatim has described the Senate as a “stepping stone to the top” for politicians and senators.
In a speech on the first day of the new Dewan Negara session, Rais acknowledged that 17 senators had resigned to contest in the recently concluded general election (GE15).
“Some were successful and some were not. Six new senators, of whom four are ministers and two are deputy ministers, have already started serving as members of the administration.
“Some who lost in GE15, thank God, have also been appointed and are among (the ministers and deputy ministers who are senators).
“That is how honourable the Dewan Negara is, always becoming a stepping stone to the top,” he said.
He urged the ministers and deputy ministers who are senators not to “forget” the upper house.
The four senators in Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s Cabinet are Tengku Zafrul Aziz Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, Zambry Abd Kadir and Na’im Mokhtar.
Three deputy ministers are senators – Fuziah Salleh, K Saraswathy and Huang Tiong Sii.
Tengku Zafrul, Saifuddin, Zambry, Fuziah and Saraswathy had contested in GE15 for their respective parties but lost.
Tengku Zafrul was a senator before the Nov 19 polls, having first been appointed in March 2020. He was formerly the finance minister in the administrations of Muhyiddin Yassin and Ismail Sabri Yaakob.