Monday, January 24, 2011

Lawmakers welcome mandatory health checks

The proposal to make it mandatory for lawmakers in the country to undergo annual health checks after 11 elected politicians died of wide-ranging illnesses in less than three years, has been well-received.
Kota Belud member of parliament Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahalan agreed with the suggestion but he said that medical information of the members of parliament and assemblymen should be restricted to only party leaders.
He reminded elected representatives to be cautious when travelling long hours to interior areas by boat or overland as it could take a toll on their health.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said on Saturday that he would soon recommend to the Cabinet for mandatory health examinations involving members of Parliament and state legislatures.
“Currently, we just let the elected representatives take the initiative to go for medical check-ups but we want to make sure that they go for at least one every year,” he said.
“We will also make sure they get reminders for the scheduled check-ups.
He stressed that the move would help Members of Parliament and state assemblymen keep tabs on their health status and ensure they were fit enough to serve the rakyat.
“If the examinations show that they are unhealthy, we will ensure they get the appropriate treatment immediately,” he said.
Since the general election in March 2008, 14 by-elections have been held with one more to be announced following the death of Merlimau assemblyman Datuk Mohamad Hidhir Abu Hassan on Thursday.
The number of by-elections so far is the highest in the country’s electoral history

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