Mohamad Asfia: Issue of caretaker govt does not arise as Sarawak DUN not dissolved

Mohamad Asfia explaining the terms of the Emergency (Essential Power) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021 during a press conference. Screenshot taken from a Sarawak Public Communications Unit (Ukas) livestream today (August 4, 2021).

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By Adrian Lim

KUCHING, Aug 4: The issue of a caretaker government in Sarawak does not arise as the Sarawak Legislative Assembly (DUN) is not dissolved, says DUN Speaker Datuk Amar Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar.

Mohamad Asfia said the DUN remains ‘alive’ due to the declaration of emergency by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah while the Sarawak government under the administration of the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) continues to function.

“Under the Emergency Ordinance, the government carries on. The caretaker is upon the dissolution of DUN.

“The DUN carries on and is not dissolved,” he told reporters during a special press conference at the DUN complex here today.

He was responding to a question on whether there is a caretaker government in Sarawak during the current period of emergency which is due to end on February 2, 2022.

Mohamad Asfia explained that the dissolution of DUN is effective when the emergency is revoked by the Agong in consultation with Sarawak Governor Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud.

At present, he added, the Sarawak Cabinet continues to carry out its function, including the ministers and the elected representatives.

Earlier, Mohamad Asfia said the term of DUN, which expires on June 6 was extended to August 1 due to Section 15(1)(a) and Section 15(1)(b) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 declared by His Majesty.

“While the Sarawak DUN expires on June 6, from June 7 to August 1, the Sarawak DUN lives on a resuscitated life thanks to Section 15(1)(a) and Section 15(1)(b) of the previous emergency ordinance.

“With the Emergency (Essential Power) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021, the Sarawak DUN lives a resurrected life from August 2, 2021 to February 2, 2022.

“The Dewan Undangan Negeri has been reborn and reincarnated,” he said.

Mohamad Asfia added the Emergency (Essential Power) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021 proclaimed by the King on July 31 was a new law and different from the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 the latter declared earlier on January 11.

DUN deputy speaker Dato Gerawat Gala was also present at the press conference which was also livestreamed. — DayakDaily