SHAH ALAM, 12 May 2009: Five Selangor reps, including former menteri besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, were today called by the state assembly’s Rights and Privileges Committee to give their statements about allegations made against the assembly.
Committee chairperson Teng Chang Kim said four of them were called for making statements attacking the Select Committee on Competency, Accountability and Transparency (Selcat), hence questioning the rights and privileges of the assembly.
Another assemblyperson was accused of not being present as a witness at a Selcat public hearing and issuing a statement which touched on its integrity, said Teng (DAP-Sg Pinang), who is also the state assembly speaker, to reporters after the hearing this morning.
Selcat had called witnesses to appear before a public hearing in March this year on the sponsorship funds channelled to the Association of Wives of Selangor Assemblypersons and Members of Parliament (Balkis), which was disbanded in March last year.
Besides Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo, the other assemblypersons called today were Datuk Marsum Paing (BN-Dengkil), Mohd Isa Abu Kasim (BN-Batang Kali), Datuk Mohamed Idris Abu Bakar (BN-Hulu Bernam) and Datuk Warno Dogol (BN-Sabak).
The Rights and Privileges Committee is made up of Amirudin Shari (PKR-Batu Caves), Hannah Yeoh (DAP-Subang Jaya), Gan Pei Nei (PKR-Rawang), Dr Shafie Abu Bakar (PAS-Bangi) and Wong Koon Mun (BN-Kuala Kubu Baru).
Teng said the five accused had finished giving their statements and the committee would meet again on 19 May to prepare a report on the enquiry and make recommendations.
The report will be tabled at the next state assembly sitting and to be endorsed by the assembly for implementation.
Asked on the kind of punishment to be meted out if the assemblypersons were found guilty, Teng said they could be asked to apologise, issued a warning or suspended without pay.
He said the hearing was made after Selcat reported the matter to the Rights and Privileges Committee.
Mohd Khir, when met after the hearing, said: “I’m not allowed to speak about what happened today.”
M Athimulan, one of the seven lawyers representing the five assemblypersons, said he had advised his clients not to make any comment on the hearing.
Asked why Mohd Khir was not allowed to speak on the matter, Athimulan said: “If he discloses anything that transpired at the hearing which was held closed-door, he is committing an offence.” — Bernama