Opposition members of parliament (MPs) walked out of Malaysia's Dewan Rakyat on Dec. 14, protesting the presence of three lawmakers who were meant to be under home quarantine.
According to Malaysiakini, the trio — made up of Health Minister Adham Baba and Human Resources Minister M Saravanan as well as MP P Prabakaran from the opposition — appeared in full personal protective equipment (PPE).
They had been quarantined after being exposed to a Covid-19 patient.
“What reasons are there for these MPs to be allowed to be present in Parliament when they have been categorised as close contacts (of Covid-19 positive cases)?” opposition MP Xavier Jayakumar asked Dewan Rakyat Speaker Azhar Azizan Harun, according to the Malaymail.
Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim also sought an explanation from the speaker
Malaysiakini reported that Azhar responded by saying he was simply following Covid-19 procedures set by the Health Ministry.
According to the Malaymail, Azhar said that he had allowed the quarantined MPs to attend as an opposition MP had previously broken quarantine in similar circumstances.
However, this did not placate the opposition MPs, the majority of whom from the PKR and DAP parties, and walked out while MPs from the government bench jeered them.
The walkout occurred as the Dewan Rakyat was about to conduct a bloc vote on the Federal Territories Ministry's RM956.7 million (S$315.48 million) allocation under the Supply (Budget) Bill 2021.
The bloc voting proceeded and the government passed the ministry's budget with 110 for, seven against, 31 abstained and 72 absent, reported Malaysiakini.
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