Thu, October 28, 2021

in-focus

Majority in opinion poll oppose penalising MPs who defy party position


A majority of people in an opinion poll opposed punishment for members of Parliament who do not follow their party's position in voting on issues.

The survey carried out by the National Institute of Development Administration surveyed 1,310 people between February 24-26.

The respondents were asked how parties should deal with rebel MPs during voting in a no-confidence debate.

More than half -- 52.67 per cent-- said that punishment should not be allowed because it is an individual's right to express different opinions. It is not always necessary to follow party resolutions. Around 45.80 per cent said that there should be a punishment because MPs have the duty to represent the people, and they have to vote or follow the party's resolution, not just their own opinion.

Some 1.53 per cent said that they were not interested in the question

When those who backed action against defiant MPs were asked what punishment would be appropriate:

34.34 per cent said they should not be fielded as an MP candidate by the party in the next election;

26 per cent said they should be banned from engaging in political activities within the party or in government;

17.33 per cent said they should be laid off from all positions in the party and government;

16.33 per cent said they should be expelled from the party;

4.67 per cent said they should be forced to resign from the party;

1.33 per cent suggested other approaches, include being warned.

The respondents were also asked about punishment for opposition MPs whose votes did not meet the resolution of the coalition opposition:

53.82 per cent said there should be no punishment because individual opinions must be respected. Equal rights and freedoms could mean having a different opinion.

43.82 per cent said sanctions should be imposed for failing to comply with party resolutions and being unfair to alliance partners;

2.36 per cent did not answer.

As for punishment for radical opposition MPs:

34.34 per cent said the party should not field them as an MP candidate in the next election;

26 per cent said they should be banned from engaging in political activities within the party or government;

17.33 per cent said they should be taken off all positions in the party and government;

16.33 per cent said they should be fired from the party;

4.67 per cent said they should be forced to resign from the party;

1.33 per cent stated other approaches, including a warning.

Published : February 28, 2021

By : The Nation