Not a caretaker government

State Legislative Assembly (DUN) Speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar

KUCHING: State Legislative Assembly (DUN) Speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar has refuted claims from several quarters that the current Sarawak government is a caretaker government as it has exceeded its term due to the current Emergency.

He pointed out that a caretaker government would be only be in place once the DUN dissolved when the Emergency ended on Feb 2 next year or was revoked earlier.

“There is no caretaker (government). Under the Emergency Ordinance, the government carries on, the caretaker is upon dissolution. The DUN is not dissolved, it carries on.

“The chief minister and the Cabinet carry on and the YBs will carry on. There is no dissolution. Dissolution is only when the Emergency Ordinance in Sarawak is revoked by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong in consultation with the Yang di-Pertua Negeri.

“If it is revoked, then the DUN will dissolve. Otherwise, there is no dissolution of DUN. That is why some members asked for DUN sitting as it is not dissolved until Feb 2, 2022,” he said.

He said this during a press conference on the Emergency Proclamation at the DUN building Wednesday (Aug 4).

Asfia explained that the current Emergency (Essential Powers) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021 was not an extension of the previous Ordinance that applied nationwide but rather it was tailor made for Sarawak.

“ln determining the operation of the Proclamation of Emergency (Sarawak) the Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall consult the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak.

“The operation of the Proclamation of Emergency (Sarawak) may be terminated earlier by Yang di-Pertuan Agong in consultation with the Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Sarawak,” he said.

Asfia added as long as the Emergency was in force, the provision of clause (3) of Article 21 of the State Constitution that the DUN was to stand dissolved five years from its first sitting, would have no effect.

“The DUN shall be dissolved on the date the Proclamation of Emergency is revoked or annulled,” he said.