KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin says he is "still with Umno" although he refused to join a walkout staged by his fellow opposition MPs in Parliament on Monday morning (July 16).
He said he wanted to be an exemplary opposition MP, so he decided not to join the protest by lawmakers from Barisan Nasional and Parti Islam SeMalaysia over the appointment of retired judge Mohamad Ariff Yusof as Speaker. The opposition said the appointment process was not transparent.
"I am an Umno member and I know my limits. But when I am required to give my opinions, I will give them according to what I think it is right," Khairy said, adding that he was only speaking for himself.
"We have to respect the House and the swearing-in ceremony," said the former youth and sports minister.
He said lawmakers should instead express their dissatisfaction during debates which will be held after the Parliament is officially opened by the Malaysian king, Sultan Muhammad V, on Tuesday.
"We can protest during debates or after the officiating ceremony tomorrow. To me, it's better if we respect the ceremony and not resort to any actions that might undermine Barisan's image as a credible opposition."
Both Khairy and Kimanis MP Anifah Aman remained seated in the House during the walkout.
Asked if he would be called up for not following the party whip, Khairy said: "I don't know."