PAS agrees with UMNO not to push for GE15 to be held anytime soon

PAS agreed with UMNO’s suggestion not to pressure the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government to hold the 15th General Election (GE15) anytime soon as the country should be focusing on fighting the. Covid-19 pandemic, which has been deemed a grave emergency.

Its secretary-general, Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan, said the suggestion was appropriate and timely as the focus of attention of the state and federal governments should be on the efforts to fight the deadly coronavirus, which is still spreading in Malaysia and around the world.

“Political parties should also focus on efforts to help the people affected by the pandemic, not only in the aspect of health but also the economy,” he said in a statement here today.

He said this in response to the UMNO election director Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman’s statement yesterday that no parties including UMNO should pressure the government to hold the GE15 anytime soon as the country should be focusing on fighting Covid-19.

Takiyuddin, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law), said all political parties, as well as non-governmental organisations, should also give their cooperation to the government in handling and solving issues related to Covid-19, including issues that could raise tension and bring about a negative impact, as well as a waste time, energy and money.

“PAS is confident that the government will continue taking proactive measures after taking into consideration the opinions and suggestions from all quarters for the benefit of all Malaysians,” he said.



Yang di-Pertuan Agong

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong also known as the King, is the constitutional monarch and head of state of Malaysia. The office was established in 1957, when the Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia) gained independence from the United Kingdom. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong is elected by the Conference of Rulers, comprising the nine rulers of the Malay states and the governors or Yang di-Pertua Negeri of the other four states, with the office de facto rotated between them, making Malaysia one of the world’s few elective monarchies.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s queen consort is known as the Raja Permaisuri Agong.

Constitutional Role

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s role is that of a constitutional monarch. The Constitution of Malaysia and Acts of Parliament made in accordance with it define the extent of his powers as the head of state. These are divided into two categories: powers exercised on the advice of the Prime Minister, another Minister, the Cabinet, the Conference of Rulers, or some other officer or institution, and discretionary powers.

The Constitution vests the executive power of the federal government in the monarch. However, with few exceptions, he is bound to exercise this power on the advice of the Cabinet or a minister acting under the Cabinet’s general authority. Thus, in practice, most of the actual day-to-day work of governing is performed by the Cabinet.

Head of Islam

In addition, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is the Head of Islam in the four states ruled by appointed Governors, in the three Federal Territories, as well as in his own state (Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur). In this role, he is advised by the State Islamic Affairs Council in each of the States.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints the chairman and members of each council. He also appoints the State Mufti in each of these states. There is a single Islamic Affairs Council with jurisdiction for the three Federal Territories. This council is also appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.


In accordance with Article 41 of the Constitution, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is Commander-in-Chief of the Malaysian Armed Forces. As such, he is the highest-ranking officer in the military chain of command.

As the Supreme Commander of the Malaysian Armed Forces, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints the Chief of Defence Forces, on the advice of the Armed Forces Council. He also appoints the service heads of each of the three branches of the military forces.


Mahathir to meet with Agong on Thursday, other party leaders yet to receive invitations

Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang) today confirmed that its pro-tem chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will have an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah at Istana Negara on Thursday.

“The official letter from the palace was received last week. However, the time for the audience has yet to be ascertained,” Pejuang Information chief Ulya Aqamah Husamudin told Bernama when contacted here today.

There have been reports of late that the King will be meeting the leaders of all political parties over what is speculated to be the emergency or the convening of parliament.

Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) Information chief Datuk Wan Saiful Wan Jan and MCA secretary-general Datuk Chong Sin Woon, when asked the same question, said they had no information on the matter, while Gerakan president Datuk Dr Dominic Lau Hoe Chai and MIC president Tan Sri S. A. Vigneswaran, said they had not received any invitation from Istana Negara regarding an audience with Al-Sultan Abdullah.

UMNO deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, on the other hand, said he was not sure whether or not UMNO had received such an invitation.

“I heard so. But I have not been to the office… I’m not so sure whether UMNO has received such a letter or not,” he said.

On a different note, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) secretary-general Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail told Bernama to refer the matter to Datuk Seri Khairuddin Abu Hassan, who is a member of the opposition’s committee lobbying for an end to the state of emergency.

“Refer to Khairuddin… he might have more information than us,” he said referring to the media report Monday which quoted Khairuddin as saying that the King had agreed to grant an audience to all political party leaders, including from the opposition.

On February 9, the Prime Minister’s office announced the appointment of 19 members of the Special Independent Emergency Committee 2021 (SIEC), chaired by former Chief Justice Tun Arifin Zakaria.

Other members include former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Samsudin Osman, former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Norian Mai, former Chief of Defence Force Tan Sri Zulkifli Zainal Abidin, former Health director-general Prof Tan Sri Dr Mohamad Taha Arif, former Sabah state secretary Tan Sri Sukarti Wakiman and also Saifuddin Nasution.

The committee was set up under Section 2 of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 and will advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the ongoing Emergency and when it should end.

The National Security Council and the Prime Minister’s Department will be secretariats for this committee.



Zambry Abdul Kadir appointed new BN secretary-general

The Barisan Nasional (BN) supreme council unanimously agreed to appoint Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir as BN secretary-general.

The appointment of the former Perak Menteri Besar was announced by BN chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi in a statement after the BN supreme council general annual meeting was conducted online tonight.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also UMNO president, said the meeting aslo unanimously agreed to appoint Perlis Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azlan Man as the state’s BN coordinating committee chairman.

He added that the supreme council also decided to strengthen the party’s machinery in several states to help vaccination registration efforts, especially among the elderly, person with disabilities (PwD) and residents in rural areas.

“The supreme council also urged all parties to comply with the standard operating procedure (SOP) to curb the spread of Covid-19, which is worrisome at the moment,” he said.

Ahmad Zahid said that at the meeting, the annual report and financial report dated Dec 31, 202 were tabled.

The annual general meeting was attended by all four BN component parties, UMNO, MCA, MIC and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS).

Meanwhile, Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan who was appointed BN secretary-general on January 5, tweeted that he had withdrew from the post in February and that is was approved by Ahmad Zahid.

“The positions of UMNO secretary-general and Muafakat Nasional (MN) joint secretary-general (which he currently occupies) are more than enough responsibilities,” he said.



Malaysia Parliament

The Parliament of Malaysia is the national legislature of Malaysia, adopted based on the Westminster model.

The bicameral parliament consists of the Dewan Rakyat (House of Representatives) which is the lower house and the Dewan Negara (Senate), the upper house.

The member of Dewan Rakyat is referred as ‘Member of Parliament’ (MP) while the member of Dewan Negara is referred as ‘Senator’.

The powers of the Parliament

As the ultimate legislative body in Malaysia, the Parliament is responsible for passing, amending and repealing acts of law. It is subordinate to the Head of State, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, under Article 39 of the Federal Constitution.

Members of Parliament are permitted to speak on any subject without fear of censure; the only body that can censure an MP is the House Committee of Privileges. Parliamentary immunity takes effect from the moment a member of Parliament is sworn in, and only applies when that member has the floor; it does not apply to statements made outside the House.

An exception to this rule are portions of the constitution related to the social contract, such as the Articles governing citizenship, the priorities of Bumiputera, the Malay language, etc. — all public questioning of these provisions is illegal under the 1971 amendments to the Sedition Act, which Parliament passed in the wake of the 1969 13 May race riots. Members of Parliament are also forbidden from criticising the Yang di-Pertuan Agong or any Ruler. Parliamentary immunity and other such privileges are set out by Article 63 of the Constitution; as such, the specific exceptions to such immunity had to be included in the Constitution by amendment after the 13 May incident.

Members of Dewan Rakyat

The Dewan Rakyat consists of 222 members of Parliament (MPs) elected from single-member constituencies in a general election using the first-past-the-post system. Whichever candidates that obtained the most votes in the constituency will be considered elected as the representative.

A general election is held every five years or earlier with the dissolution of Parliament by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the advice of the Prime Minister. 

Malaysians are eligible to register as voters when they reach 18 years, which has just been amended in the recent years, although the execution has not been in place yet. However voting in the elections is not compulsory. The minimum age to stand as a candidate in the election is also 18 years old.

When a Member of Parliament passes away, resigns or become disqualified to hold a seat, a by-election will be held in the constituency unless the tenure left for the current Parliament is less than two years, where the seat is simply left vacant until the next general election.

The criteria to be qualified as a candidate for the Member of Parliament is that an individual must be a Malaysian, not less than. 18 years old, mentally sane, not bankrupt and not appointed to the Dewan Negara.

Members of Dewan Negara

The Dewan Negara consists of 70 Senators; 26 are elected by the 13 state assemblies (2 senators per state), 44 members (including 2 from the Kuala Lumpur, 1 from Putrajaya and 1 from Labuan) are appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the advice of the Prime Minister.

Senators must be a Malaysian, 30 years or above, and are appointed to a three-year term for a maximum of two terms. The dissolution of the Parliament does not affect the Dewan Negara.


Calls for Ahmad Zahid to resign as Umno President gets louder

More and more Umno local leaders and members are advocating for Umno President Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to resign from the top position.

When Pontian Youth chief Helmi Buang, Seremban Youth chief Zool Amali Hussin and few other members urged Ahmad Zahid to retire with dignity, the Paya Besar division chief Datuk Ahmad Tajuddin Sulaiman joins the chorus.

According to NST’s reports, several banners urging Ahmad Zahid to relinquish his presidency was erected at several places including Seremban, Tanjung Malim, Kuala Kangsar and Bandar Tun Razak.

What they’re saying: “The directionless actions of the Supreme Council members and MPs are threatening Malay support for Umno, which we need to face the 15th general election,” states Datuk Ahmad Tajuddin.

“The many court cases involving Umno leaders, including Ahmad Zahid himself, who is facing a total of 87 charges for corruption and abuse of power, among others is causing a strain on Umno, as the party is now forced to carry the burden of leaders who are currently facing criminal charges.”

The Deputy President Dato’ Seri Utama Mohamad Hasan tweeted in Malay that means, “Follow with wisdom, object with a civilised mindset.”


Anwar Ibrahim claims majority of MPs requests to reconsider the state of emergency

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim claimed a majority of Members of Parliament have submitted a letter urging Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah to reconsider the recently declared state of emergency.

The issue: With the edict issued by Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced the declaration of emergency which begins 12th January and last until 1st August 2021 to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The declaration of emergency temporarily suspends the Parliament and State Assemblies from convening meetings and there will be no elections held during that specific period.

Key statements: “We are not against it, but we are appealing for His Majesty to reconsider the reasons given by the prime minister which are deemed unreasonable,”Anwar Ibrahim said.

He also appealed to the King to allow the sitting of Parliament to be held at the soonest.

He said it is not against the state of emergency to hold Parliamentary sessions, because he claimed such a thing is allowed based on the Constitution.

He said this issue is important because Parliament provides a platform for check and balance on the government’s initiatives to combat the pandemic.


Businesses that are not allowed to operate yet

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin in his address on Covid-19 today announced the updates of the regulations of the Movement Control Order.

More businesses have been allowed to continue their operations beginning May 4th, however, there are still certain business and events that are not allowed in order to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 viruses.

Businesses that are not allowed to operate yet: Businesses and activities that involves large gatherings, with difficulties to control social distancing which includes cinema, karaoke, reflexology centre, entertainment centre, nightclub, theme park, museum, Ramadan bazaar, sales carnival and all sorts of conferences and exhibitions.

Other than businesses, sports activities that involves body contact, large gatherings and with the risk of Covid-19 infection are not allowed. Sports and fitness activities such as jogging, cycling, golf and badminton are allowed in a group of not more than 10 people.

Social gatherings and community events that involves large gatherings such as open house, wedding reception, break fasting events, concert, cultural events, government department’s monthly assembly and all sorts of ceremonies are not allowed.

Religious events such as parade, Friday prayers, religious activities in mosques and other religious places are not allowed.

Inter-state traveling is not allowed yet except for working purposes or to return to hometown. Inter-state travel for the purpose of Aidilfitri celebrations are not allowed.

All schools, colleges and higher educational institutions remain closed.

Other businesses that are not allowed to operate yet:

  • Fashion & accessories retail
  • Laundry shops
  • Training, seminar, courses that requires gatherings
  • Hair and beauty saloons
  • Banking and financial services that involves sales & marketing activities
  • Filming activities