Hluttaw Speaker urges MPs to follow procedures
AS MPs get settled into the second parliamentary session, the lower house Speaker has warned them to stick to the straight-and-narrow.
In what appears to be a friendly reminder of the importance of party discipline, Pyithu Hluttaw Speaker U Win Myint urged members yesterday to strictly abide by hluttaw procedures.
The first parliamentary session, which brought in a large majority of National League for Democracy (NLD) representatives who had never served before, was marked by occasional strictures, handed down from above, on the need to obey the rules – including not talking out of turn to the media. Warnings were issued about the need to avoid corruption and pursuit of ministerial positions with undue ardour.
Yesterday the Speaker reminded members “to conduct their duties properly in accordance with hluttaw rules and regulations”.
“I would like to say that it is important for MPs to do your duty correctly, though I understand that you all are working in good faith to bring about improved situations,” he told MPs.
U Win Myint said MPs should be “competent” in their work because their main duty is to satisfy the people’s will and to submit proposals to parliament in order to help the people overcome the difficulties they face.
“Only if MPs are fully competent can the honour of the legislative estate be upheld,” he said.
The second regular session will set about amending the Union budget for the current financial year. The current budget was adopted in January by the outgoing Union Solidarity and Development Party-dominated parliament. The Speaker referred to other priority bills, but did not identify them.
MPs may also submit proposals to the second session, and 12 motions are ready to be put forward. There are also 85 questions pending from the first session, and more will be submitted, the Speaker said.
Arakan National Party MP U Ba Shein declined to comment on the Speaker’s statement.
A letter from the Pyithu Hluttaw announced new rules for MPs wishing to attend non-government meetings.
If an MP wants to attend a meeting, workshop, training, or study put on by a non-government organisation (NGO) or civil society organisation (CSO), they must get approval from the hluttaw Speaker, the letter from the Pyithu Hluttaw said. The organisations must make the request to the Speaker directly, it said. Personal assistants are not allowed to attend the outside meetings, the letter said.
The request was not made at the Amyotha Hluttaw, said U Jay Yaw Wu, a member of the National Unity Party from Kachin State.
Arakan National Paty member U Ba Shein, a representative of the Pyithu Hluttaw, said that MPs do not need to obey the letter’s request.
“There are rules and regulations for hluttaw representatives,” he said yesterday. “We obey those laws. We do not need to obey this request.”