Lumpur: Datuk Yong Teck Lee, whose position as Gaya Member of
Parliament is unclear after a Federal Court ruling, has decided not
to attend the Dewan Rakyat for now to avoid embarrassing the House
and the Barisan Nasional.
“I have refrained from attending
Parliament for the first two days of this sitting,” the former
Sabah Chief Minister said.
“I do not intend to even remotely
cause any embarrassment to the Parliament, to the chair, the
Government or the Barisan Nasional by turning up (at the Dewan
rakyat) when my status is not clear,” he told reporters after
meeting Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tun Dr Mohamed Zahir Ismail.
Yong stressed, however, that this
did not mean he was vacating his seat. He was merely “staying away
from my station” until an interpretation of his court case was
provided, he said.
Asked what Dr Mohamed Zahir told
him on the matter, Yong said:” I cannot speak on behalf on him but
our understanding is that I am still a member of the Dewan, but for
me to walk into the Dewan could provoke one or two others to raise
He said he would not apply for
leave from Parliament as he was not on extended absence. On Tuesday,
Dr Mohamed Zahir said he and the Attorney-General’s Chambers were
studying the relevant laws to determine Yong’s position as an MP.
“We are expected to make a
decision soon. For now we cannot say anything,” the speaker was
quoted as saying.
Yong’s positions as the MP for
Gaya and as the Likas State Assemblyman have been brought to
question after he failed to get the Federal Court’s permission to
appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision to uphold the
Election Court’s ruling that he had committed corrupt practice
during the 1999 state election.
Yong Wednesday said Dr Mohamed
Zahir told him that his case was unprecedented and “so the
Parliament cannot revert back to any precedent and decide on the
next cause of action.”
Aspects of the law on the matter
was still vague, he said, adding: “We have come to a situation
where the law has to be interpreted. The Federal Court in its
verdict did not make any specific order.” - Bernama