Voon Lee Shan

Although the King extends the life of the state cabinet during emergency, this does not mean that the "life" of the Legislature is extended. The life of the Legislature is governed by the Sarawak Constitution and will despite the emergency, expire after 6 June 2021.

When emergency was declared, the Legislature could not by the King's decree hold any meeting.

Since the Legislature will automatically expire, the term of all YBs will also expire and with that they should not be entitled to any YB salary and allowances. The ministers could be entitled to salaries and allowances.

Assistant ministers should not receive any allowances and salaries as they are not by virtue of Article 7A Sarawak Constitution members of the Cabinet. Unless appointed or re-appointed by TYT as assistant ministers
to hold office until the next DUN, assistant ministers shall have no right to receive further salaries and allowances after 6 June 2021

The Speaker's term of office had been extended recently for another term will not be affected by the expiry of the term of the Legislature.

Since office of YBs expires automatically after 6 June, 2021 it is logical that YBs in the government should not be allowed to issue grants or MRP funds without any sanction of the Legislature. This will be an abuse of democracy and the voters should punish them in coming elections, if they do so.

On expiry of term of DUN Sarawak must, under Article 21(4) holds elections within 60 days from 7 June, 2021. It is doubtful whether the King has the power under emergency laws, decree no elections be held beyond the 60 days period mentioned in Article 21(4) of the Sarawak Constitution. The matter has to tested in court. There is no provision in the Sarawak Constitution for the King to interfere with the life of the Legislature (DUN) because this power solely lies with TYT.

If the King interferes with the life of DUN this may spark political controversies and be politicised by all quarters. This may give an impression that Sarawak government has no autonomy at all in running the state.

Voon Lee Shan
Parti Bumi Kenyalang
4 June 2021

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