KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 3 – Khairy Jamaluddin today moved to postpone the tabling of the tobacco control bill report by the parliamentary special select committee (PSSC) in charge of the proposed legislation latest on Thursday (October 6).
The health minister, who chairs the 13-member bipartisan tobacco bill PSSC, said the committee “required more time” to carefully review the bill before recommendations are presented to the Dewan Rakyat, Khairy told Parliament today.
The tobacco bill committee was scheduled to deliver their statement containing proposed improvements to the Control of Tobacco Product and Smoking Bill 2022 on the first day of the current Parliament meeting today. The motion was passed by a voice vote.
Note that the motion is for PSSC’s report on its recommendations for the tobacco bill – not the actual revised bill. It is unclear if Khairy will table the revised bill for second reading, with the bill debated on Thursday immediately after tabling the PSSC report, before Budget 2023 is tabled on Friday.
Khairy has insisted on tabling the controversial tobacco control bill for debate and passage in the upcoming Parliament meeting, amid speculation that Parliament may be dissolved soon after Umno leadership decided to hold the 15th general election this year.
The tobacco bill PSSC comprises members from major political parties, including Barisan Nasional (BN), Perikatan Nasional (PN), as well as Pejuang.
Another PSSC member, Penampang MP Darrell Leiking, is deputy president of Warisan, a Sabah-based party.
Most of the other committee members are not members of their respective party leaderships.
Umno representatives on the tobacco bill PSSC include Umno supreme council members Azalina Othman Said (Pengerang) and Abdul Azeez Rahim (Baling).
The sole DAP representative on the committee is DAP Youth chief Dr Kelvin Yii, while PKR and Amanah are represented by Sungai Buloh MP R. Sivarasa and Kuala Selangor MP Dzulkefly Ahmad respectively.
Other members of the PSSC are Mohd Nizar Zakaria (Parit-Umno), Mas Ermieyati Samsudin (Masjid Tanah-Bersatu), Ahmad Fadhil Shaari (Pasir Mas-PAS), Lukanisman Awang Sauni (Sibuti-GPS), and Mukhriz Mahathir (Jerlun-Pejuang).