Opposition motion to sanction 22 Government MPs dismissed

(DPI photo: Speaker of the 12th Parliament, Hon. Manzoor Nadir)

Speaker of the National Assembly Manzoor Nadir on Monday morning dismissed a motion submitted by the former Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon to sanction 22 members of the Government.

The motion seconded by Opposition Chief Whip Christopher Jones, sought to send several Government Members of Parliament to the Privileges Committee over actions displayed in the National Assembly on December 29, 2022. On the day in question, the Assembly was transformed into chaos as the Opposition attempted to stop the passage of the Amended Natural Resources Fund (NRF) Bill.

In his dismissal of the motion, the Speaker said “First, the motion will not proceed because a prima facie case has not been established and secondly,…you can’t bring a legal action for your illegal actions in the first place and based on those two, I am not allowing that motion to go ahead.”

On January 24, Government Chief Whip Gail Teixeira tabled a similar motion in the National Assembly for eight Opposition MPs to be sent to the Privileges Committee. She alluded to the efforts to steal the symbolic Parliamentary mace, damage to equipment of the Arthur Chung Convention Center, assault of a Parliamentary staff and disregard for the speaker and the authority of the assembly, noting that the actions “require stern measures.”

As a result, the matter was referred to the Privileges Committee which will deliberate and submit recommendations to the Assembly.