KUALA LUMPUR, March 23 — A total of 38 senators participated in the debate on the motion of thanks for the royal address in the Dewan Negara, which carried on for three days since Tuesday (March 21).
Before adjourning the sitting at 5.05pm today, Dewan Negara deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Ali Mohamad said the ministers would answer the questions brought up by the senators on Monday and Tuesday.
Earlier, among the issues raised in today’s debate session was on aid for the B40 group in Sarawak, the illegal immigrants in Sabah and the management of the customary land of the Orang Asli.
Senator Rita Sarimah Patrick Insol expressed hope that targeted crop subsidies and land preparation for oil palm plantations would be reintroduced to help the B40 group in Sarawak get out of poverty.
“The Bumiputera community in Sarawak is rich in land but poor in money, poor in machines, poor in methods and other manufacturing resources. Crop subsidies including site preparation for oil palm plantations have previously benefited many B40 families,” she said.
Senator Datuk Bobbey Ah Fang Suan suggested that the Malaysian government discuss with the Philippine government to open a consulate general office in Sabah to address the issue of illegal immigrants and refugees in the state.
Meanwhile, Senator Manolan Ahmad proposed the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development establish a special committee on Orang Asli land to coordinate the powers of the state and federal governments in managing the matter.
The Dewan Negara sitting continues on Monday (March 27).