Did SUPP support NSC Bill in KL, but oppose it in Kuching?

QUICK TAKE: There appears to be conflicting reports on whether Senator Dr Sim Kui Hian opposed or supported the National Security Council (NSC) Bill when it was debated in Parliament last month.

Senator Sim who is Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) president said he opposed the Bill during his debate in the Senate on 21 December 2015.

But Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen disputed it, accusing Sim and SUPP of “hypocrisy” because when in Parliament SUPP supported the Bill, but in Kuching they opposed it.

The Bill, said the State DAP chairman, exposed the “hypocrisy” of SUPP and Sim.

SUPP’s only federal minister Richard Riot gave his support when the Bill was first mooted in the Cabinet.

“In Kuching, Dr Sim told Sarawakians he opposed the Bill,” Chong said.

The SUPP leader, according to Chong, was trying to play “hero” in Sarawak, but becoming an obedient servant to his federal masters in Parliament.

Dr Sim’s position was understandable as he did not wish to offend his political bosses, added Chong.

Furious with Chong’s allegation, Sim issued a challenge to the DAP leader to prove that he (Sim) had supported the Bill.

“I opposed the Bill, and I did not support it. So, I hope the people will not be misled by the opposition,” he was quoted as saying in the local media.

He said that it was frustrating that the opposition, particularly the State DAP, was pointing fingers at him in relation to the passing of the NSC Bill.

“In the Dewan Negara, it was only voice voting, with no chance to cast individual votes. Likewise, tell him (Chong) to show me that Pakatan senators say they do not agree.”

Sim added that “it is not fair and not accurate to say that I supported (the NSC Bill) as it was voice voting.”

In accepting the challenge, Chong produced the Parliament hansard to prove that Sim did not oppose the Bill.

In fact, he gave full support to the Bill.

The hansard does not lie, stressed Chong.

According to the hansard, Sim when debating the Bill on 21 December 2015 said in Malay: “Sebagai senator dari Sarawak, saya bagi pihak segala usaha dan langkah yang dibuat oleh Kerejaan Persekutuan dalam memastikan keselamatan Negara Malaysia khususnya di Negeri Sarawak dalam keadaan terjamin.

“Saya menyokong dasar kerejaan yang sentiasa prihatin terhadap keselamatan rakyat dengan mengamalkan sikap proaktif contohnya pelbagai undang-undang baru seperti POTA 2015 dan Security Offences (special Measures) (Amendment) Bill 2015, dengan izin, diperkenalkan bertujuan untuk memastikan kesejahteraan dan keselamatan rakyat terjamin”.

Did he say he opposed the Bill?, asked Chong.

Now, who do you believe? Sim or Chong?

- The Ant Daily

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