Umno vice-president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has expressed support to the proposal to introduce the Anti-Hop Law to ensure political stability in the country.

“It’s needs to be looked into again. It is not that we fear more will leave the Barisan Nasional (BN) but what is important is the question of principle,” he said.

Speaking to reporters after attending a Chinese New Year open house at the residence of his deputy and Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) president Datuk VK Liew, Muhyiddin who is also Minister of International Trade and Industry, said there was a need to look at it seriously taking into consideration the current political scenario.

“Personally, I do agree to that a re-look be made at the earlier provisions of the Federal constitution.

“But, of course, it’s entirely up to BN leaders to see the rationale in amending the constitution (to enable the enaction of the proposed Anti-Hop Law) and find out what the people think about it,” he said.

He was asked to comment on Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) and Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Joseph Pairin Kitingan’s remarks yesterday that the time was ripe to amend the Federal Constitution for the enaction of the proposed Anti-Hop Law.

Pairin had said debate on the proposed Anti-Hop Law should be brought to a conclusion so that political stability based on honesty and sincerity in joining a political party and the social contract between the voters and the candidate could be properly crystallised.

The then-PBS government enacted such a law in the 1980s but it was later declared ultra-vires the Federal Constitution as it restrained one’s freedom of association.

Asked on the outcome of the Umno supreme council meeting yesterday, Muhyiddin said the party had agreed in principle to beef up Umno’s disciplinary board by increasing the number of members in it.

However, he said there was no decision made on the status of the present board members.

The Umno disciplinary board is currently being chaired by Tengku Tan Sri Ahmad Rithauddeen Tengku Ismail, a former Minister of Defence in Tun Dr Mahathir’s cabinet in the late 80s.

— BERNAMA