PETALING JAYA: Deputy speaker Ramli Nor has ruled that Ahmad Marzuk Shaary (PN-Pengkalan Chepa) did not level an accusation with “ill motives” when he engaged in some loud and angry exchanges with Howard Lee (PH-Ipoh Timor) in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.
The incident unfolded when Marzuk, who was debating the supply bill, questioned Lee for citing Quranic verses in a viral video.
The PAS MP told the Dewan Rakyat that only scholars or muftis should be interpreting and explaining Quranic verses.
This prompted Lee to invoke Standing Order 36(6), which states that no member of the House shall impute improper motives to any other member.
After reviewing the video recording of the proceedings, Ramli said Lee’s explanation did not provide details or phrases clarifying the meaning of “ill motives,” despite being given the opportunity to do so.
“It would be unfair of me to conclude that the “ill motives” existed if it was merely a presumption without an explicit explanation or phrases implying these “ill motives” being articulated by the member invoking Standing Order 36(6),” he said.
Ramli then declared that Marzuk was addressing an academic issue raised within the context of the parliamentary debate.
“As such, I conclude that no characteristics or details in the form of “part or phrase” were presented by Ipoh Timor that would support the assertion Pengkalan Chepa had violated Standing Order 36(6),” he said.
The deputy speaker also took the opportunity to remind that any MP who wishes to invoke Standing Order 36(6) in future must specify the particular part or phrase within the discussion that implies “ill motives”.
Should anyone be dissatisfied with his decision today, Ramli said the individual may propose a motion to the Speaker or take remedial action in accordance with Standing Order 43.
Last month, DAP’s Lee courted public scrutiny for allegedly making his own interpretation of a Quranic verse in a viral video. He has since apologised after being summoned by the police for investigations.
Religious affairs minister Na’im Mokhtar, who met Lee to talk about the issue last week, clarified that Lee had not interpreted the Quran but only recited a translation of one of the verses in the Islamic holy scripture.