KUALA LUMPUR: An appeal to debate the Pandora Papers in Parliament has been filed by Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun after his earlier motion was rejected.
The appeal was filed on Thursday (Oct 7) via a letter dated the same day.
“After the motion to debate the Pandora Papers was rejected, I have submitted an appeal to the Speaker.
“I am of the opinion that a debate on the Pandora Papers must be expedited. I hope this appeal can be considered as soon as possible,” Anwar said in a Facebook posting.
In the letter, Anwar referred to the rejection of his motion on Wednesday (Oct 6) and argued that the Pandora Papers are of public interest, as it involved several prominent figures.
In raising the motion on Wednesday, Anwar had described the Pandora Papers as a “tax evasion scandal”.
Azhar said that while the matter was of public interest, the Pandora Papers could be discussed by the Parliamentary Select Committee.
Azhar argued that the Pandora Papers had not been verified and Standing Order 23(1)(i) states that Parliament should not be the platform to confirm mere media reports.
The Pandora Papers are a data leak involving 2.94 terabytes of data which cited the opening of offshore accounts involving former and current government and political leaders around the world, including Malaysia.
Among those named in the Pandora Papers as having offshore accounts were Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz, former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Selayang PKR MP William Leong.