11 July 2024

A joint sitting of parliament is expected to convene on either August 18th or 19th, after the Constitutional Court rules on whether it will consider a petition regarding the renomination of Move Forward leader for prime minister and whether to order the suspension of the process to select a prime minister.

House speaker Wan Muhamad Noor Matha said today (Saturday) that, as the Court has delayed its consideration to August 16th, parliament plans, subject to that ruling, to reconvene within the following three days, with the intention to select a prime minister.

The Ombudsman has submitted a petition to the Court regarding the constitutionality of parliament’s decision on July 19th to vote down the renomination of Pita Limjaroenrat for the premiership.

Wan Muhamad, speaking as he departed for the ASEAN Inter-Parliament Assembly in Indonesia, reiterated that parliament should wait for the Court’s ruling before making any moves concerning the premiership.

On Friday, Wan Muhamad ordered an abrupt end to the joint parliamentary sitting after Move Forward MPs demanded that the chamber reconsider the July 19th decision (now with the Charter Court). The speaker and some senators tried in vain to talk down the demand before closing the meeting.

As a result, a discussion on a motion, proposed by Move Forward, to revoke Article 272 of the Constitution, which allows senators to vote for a prime minister, has been delayed until the next parliamentary meeting.

Wan Muhamad explained that he initially expected to open the floor for a full discussion of Article 272, but Move Forward and Pheu Thai MPs kept parliament busy with a proposal to reconsider what had already been decided.

“I have been in parliament for 40 years, but have never seen a review of a motion which has already been decided,” he said.

He insisted the Court’s ruling is important and will be considered final. It is binding on everyone, so we have to wait for the Court.