Dewan Negara passes 4 bills

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Deputy Law Minister Mas Ermieyati Samsudin says it is not usual practice for a special select committee to review senator appointments. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, August 16, 2022.

THE Dewan Negara yesterday passed four bills related to customs, excise, free zones, and tourism tax. 

The bills were Customs (Amendment) Bill 2022, Excise (Amendment) Bill 2022, Free Zones (Amendment) Bill 2022, and Tourism Tax (Amendment) Bill 2022. 

Deputy Finance Minister II Yamani Hafez Musa when winding up the debate on the Customs (Amendment) Bill 2022 said the amendment was aimed at improving the nation’s taxation legislation in line with the current change in business. 

“All matters that we amend are made based on views and feedback from our customers, and they are more to facilitate our customers to fulfil their obligations as taxpayers without being punished, as according to the previous act, they would be penalised,” he said at the Dewan Negara sitting yesterday.

Yamani said the Excise (Amendment) Bill 2022 was proposed to include a new provision to enable certain facilitations be given to taxpayers in the event of a public or health crisis.

He also said the Free Zones (Amendment)) Bill 2022 was undertaken to insert a new provision to give flexibility to the industry and government to implement obligations that are required to be completed in a specified period during a public or health crisis. 




The Tourism Tax (Amendment) Bill 2022 was made to add a new provision to enable certain facilitations to be given to taxpayers during a public or health crisis. 

Before the sitting was adjourned, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) Mas Ermieyati Samsudin said the proposal for a special select committee to consider the appointments of senators has never been practised by any Commonwealth country with a similar constitution as Malaysia’s. 

She said the proposal that the function of the committee is to consider the appointment of senators is not in line with Article 40(1) of the Federal Constitution. 

“The appointment of senators under Article 40(1) of the Federal Constitution is the prerogative power of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. 

“I agree that the appointment of senators must add value to parliament and take into account the expertise and qualifications of the individual (candidates), and I am confident the prime minister will examine this matter while the government will welcome the proposal to improve the criteria for (choosing) senators,” she said. 

Earlier, Senator A. Kesavadas brought up a motion proposing that the appointment of senators be considered via a special select committee, and that half of the senatorial appointments by the Agong be distributed to non-bipartisan candidates. – Bernama, August 16, 2022.

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