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Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof (centre) with Court Of Appeal Judge Datuk Dr Hamid Sultan Abu Bakar (right) and former Court of Appeal Judge Datuk Mah Weng Kwai gesture during the launch of the Janab Law Series and University Cum Court Annexed Arbitration Scheme Book in Parliament. - NSTP/LUQMAN HAKIM ZUBIR

KUALA LUMPUR: In order to make the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) proceedings open to the public, some amendments are needed, said Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof.

He said before the matter could be materialised, an amendment was required for Order 85 of the Standing Orders of the Dewan Rakyat.

“On top of that, we still have Rights and Privileges Act (Section 9), which has a provision limiting open public hearing; so until the report is presented, the evidence heard before a committee is still confidential.

“We need to have that changed, before we can change Order 85,” he said when met after a presentation of Janab Law Series and University Cum Court Annexed Arbitration Scheme Book event today.

Mohamad Ariff said he was open to other alternatives.

“As a general principle, it should be confidential but with a possibility of making it open to the public.

“Or just like how some other countries have done, where the proceedings are open but subject to exceptions. This is a policy matter.”

Yesterday, PAC deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh said there were calls for the committee to open the proceedings to the public as well as the media.

However, he said at the moment, PAC was bound by Order 85 and Section 9 of the Parliament Rights and Privileges Act, which prohibit the committee from doing so.

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