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Malaysian Foreign Minister sorry for vaping in Parliament

KUALA LUMPUR A video clip depicting Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein vaping during parliamentary proceedings is making its rounds on social media.

The video shows Mr Hishammuddin sneaking a vape behind his face mask while his colleague, Transport Minister Wee Ka Siong, was speaking during parliamentary proceedings.

The eight-second video is believed to have been taken on Monday.

Mr Hishammuddin apologised on Twitter and promised not to vape during parliamentary proceedings again.

"Sorry, I didn't realise - it's a new habit. I apologise to the Dewan and promise not to do it again," he tweeted.

Smoking is strictly prohibited in Parliament and the rule was tightened during Pakatan Harapan's former administration.

Former health minister Dzulkefly Ahmad had declared Parliament a non-smoking area in October 2018.

Anyone found breaking the law can be fined up to RM10,000 (S$3,270) or face imprisonment of up to two months, or both.

Pakatan Harapan MP Wong Shu Qi raised the issue with Deputy Speaker Mohd Rashid Hasnon during Parliament yesterday, asking if smoking was allowed in the House.

She had quoted Standing Order 41(d) on "behaviour of members not speaking".

Mr Rashid, in response, said he took note of the matter and the House would look into it.

Meanwhile, the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) said it was shocking for Malaysians, especially those who are fighting against smoking, to learn that a senior minister was vaping inside Parliament.

"Parliament was declared in October 2018 as a non-smoking area.

"So whoever was found smoking must be charged according to the law," said CAP education officer N.V. Subbarow in a statement.

"Hishammudin should be a role model for others. He cannot escape from the hands of law. He should he fined or compounded," the official added. - THE STAR

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