MPs now given 10-minute grace for bloc voting
KUALA LUMPUR, March 13 (Bernama) -- Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Johari Abdul has decided to improve the bloc voting process by giving Members of Parliament (MPs) a 10-minute grace period to participate in the vote if they happen to be outside the House when the bell is rung.
He said this was decided at a meeting of the Select Committee today which was attended by Datuk Dr Radzi Jidin (PN-Putrajaya), Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said (BN-Pengerang), Rafizi Ramli (PH-Pandan) and Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan (PN-Kota Bharu).
"We have taken into consideration the distance between the main block, which houses the Dewan Rakyat, and the MPs’ block at the back which is quite far away, making it difficult for all the Yang Berhormat (YBs, honourable members) to be in the House within two minutes as stipulated in the Standing Orders,” he said.
He said each time before a bloc voting, the bell would be rung for two minutes and the meeting proceedings set for 10 minutes to give time for all MPs to be in the House to participate in the process.
"This means the first bell will ring for two minutes as stated in the Standing Orders, and after that I will give 10 minutes for YBs to come into the House from wherever you may be. After that, the bell will be sounded again for two minutes.
“I still remember that at the last Parliamentary session, not enough time was given to MPs to be in the House after the bell was rung, and there was a case of one woman MP falling because she was rushing (to come in). So, I’m giving you 10 minutes,” he said.
Johari said this matter was implemented according to Standing Orders 12 (2), 13 (4) and 99.