Puppet deputies play no role at National Assembly
  • By Bui Hoang Tam | dtinews.vn | February 25, 2016 05:08 PM

A National Assembly deputy is always expected to provide opinions and express the needs and concerns of the people they represent. If a deputy is incapable of doing that, then they have not fulfilled their role.

The quality of representatives in the National Assembly is becoming hot topic in many newspapers as well as various social websites as a general election approaches. Different ideas have been expressed, but the public share the same desire; they want their deputies to try their best to represent public opinion in the country’s highest decision-making body.

According to Radio Voice of Vietnam, at the first consultative conference of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee, which was held in Hanoi on February 16, to discuss the personnel structure of the 14th National Assembly, former Vice President of the VFF Central Committee, Ha Thi Lien, said that candidates should be carefully chosen to ensure the quality of the NA and meet the high expectations of people.

"We should not select a candidate just to fill empty seats," Lien said. "I've seen cases where on many occasions we select a certain number of delegates to represent a certain group, but they never speak at any meeting, never contribute anything to the NA."

It is not uncommon to see deputies sit silently in National Assembly meetings in Vietnam. Several debates had to be closed earlier than scheduled because of reluctance for members to speak. There are only a few delegates who seem confident enough to express their ideas and opinions at NA meetings such as Tran Du Lich from HCM City, Le Van Cuong from Thanh Hoa Province, and Le Thi Nga from Thai Nguyen Province.


Deputy Tran Du Lich from HCM City spoke at a NA meeting in June 2015.

It can be seen that the only and strongest weapon that a NA deputy owns is the right to propose and debate outstanding issues. Voters are keen to see their elected representatives 'perform' attentively during all the NA meetings broadcast live on TV. No-one wants to see a puppet deputy in the NA.

Why don't they speak? Maybe they are too shy to speak in front of a large audience; maybe they are not familiar with public debating; or maybe they are not sure about the issues. Whatever the reason, voters aren’t enamoured by these deputies; National Assembly member Duong Trung Quoc from Dong Nai Province has said that they should not be deputies.

The National Assembly intends to improve supervision to prevent these puppet deputies filling up seats following the election of the 14th tenure.

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