September 23, 2022
PETALING JAYA – Ministers from opposing political groups in the Cabinet gave different views on when the next general election (GE15) should be held during their recent meeting, say sources.
The sources also revealed that no consensus could be reached during the Cabinet meeting held on Wednesday (Sept 21).
“The ministers from Barisan Nasional wanted for the general election to be called as soon as possible but have left it to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob (pic) on when to advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to dissolve the Parliament.
“However, the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia ministers want the Prime Minister to consult the Cabinet as they claim to have supported Ismail Sabri to be the Prime Minister back in 2020 when Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin agreed to step down.
“This was discussed at length during the Cabinet yesterday but reached no decision.
“One minister from Umno gave his interpretation of what the Federal Constitution said on the Prime Minister’s prerogative to dissolve Parliament,” said a source.
Matters discussed at Cabinet meetings are confidential and cannot be made public unless the Cabinet agrees that they can be declassified.
Another source said that ministers from PAS did not want elections during the monsoon season as a number of them hailed from states threatened by year-end floods.
“PAS had even declared that they will not be dissolving the state assemblies of Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu until March 2023 as these states are under their administration.
“Bersatu ministers are more on the economic side with Bersatu president Muhyiddin as the head of the National Recovery Council and Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali is the senior minister in charge of the economy,” said the sources.
A minister from Umno, who declined to be named, said that he thought it was best to let Ismail Sabri decide but he hoped it would be before the floods struck.
“The Prime Minister has not told us anything yet, although we are from the same party.
“The Umno supreme council decided that the discussions on the possible dates of dissolution would be decided solely by Ismail Sabri and Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi,” said the Umno minister.
A minister from PAS claimed that there was a memorandum of agreement signed between Perikatan head Muhyiddin and Ismail Sabri prior to the latter being appointed as the 10th Prime Minister.
“The agreement stated that the Prime Minister must consult Perikatan before deciding on dissolution. This agreement was signed by Ismail Sabri and Muhyiddin,” claimed the PAS minister.
A Bersatu minister said that the pandemic has just “ended” and the people should be the priority.
“News is that the Prime Minister is being pushed to dissolve (parliament) after Budget 2023 by his party president, but in mid-November, the floods will strike.
“Should there be an election, it must be held within 60 days after the dissolution. This means the Prime Minister must advise the King to dissolve, latest by Oct 10, right after the Budget 2023, which Perikatan does not agree to as we would not have enough time to roll out all the economic packages we have announced so far,” said the Bersatu minister.
Sources close to the Prime Minister’s Office said that all ears are on the door of the Prime Minister, but “he is keeping the date of dissolution of the Parliament, if he has decided, very close to his chest. No one knows but him”.
News of a possible dissolution has been flying around as Umno pushes the Prime Minister to get a mandate through snap polls from the people as soon as possible this year and not wait till the end of the term in July 2023.