THE Batu Sapi and Sarawak polls could be postponed if a state of emergency is declared, said Muhyiddin Yassin.
The prime minister, whose proposal to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong for an emergency was rejected, said provisions in the federal constitution require the vacancy in Batu Sapi to be filled within 60 days.
Similarly, the Sarawak elections must be held within 60 days from the dissolution of the state assembly.
“This is serious. If you ask me, I would say elections should not be held at this time,” he said referring to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Unless a state of emergency is declared under Article 150 of the constitution in Batu Sapi and in Sarawak, only then can we postpone both elections until the pandemic ends,” he said in special televised address today.
The Batu Sapi by-election will be held on December 5, while no date has been fixed for the Sarawak elections, which must be held by August next year.
Muhyiddin, on October 23, had an audience with the king to request a proclamation of emergency, ostensibly to combat the spread of Covid-19 infections that have been on the rise since last month.
Two days later, the Agong, after consultation with the Conference of Malay Rulers, decreed that the Covid-19 situation, although serious, did not warrant a state of emergency as the government had been handling it well.
An emergency would have seen elections suspended, as well as Parliament, where Muhyiddin faces several motions of no-confidence by MPs.
His support could also be tested when the Dewan Rakyat votes on Budget 2021, which will be tabled in the coming meeting to start on Monday.
Put aside differences to pass Budget 2021, Muhyiddin tells MPs
“I hope all members of Parliament can put aside their political differences to ensure that Budget 2021 is passed in the interests of the people and the country.
“Let’s put the interest of the people above anything else.
“An understanding can be formed between members of Parliament to allow Budget 2021 to be passed with the support of parliamentarians from the government and the opposition,” he said in a special televised address today.
He said Sabah, which held elections last month, has the highest number of cases at 13,701.
“There were almost 20,000 new cases in the past month compared to 10,576 cases in the previous six months,” he said.
“As such, Budget 2021 has prepared many different types of allocations to government agencies, aid to Malaysians and corporate incentives.”
Muhyiddin appears to be making the call for support after his proposal to declare a state of emergency was rejected by the king last Sunday.
And for their part, Pakatan Harapan (PH) said it was prepared to enter into a confidence and supply agreement with the government due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Although it’s been almost a week since the king rejected Muhyiddin’s proposal, the government has yet to commence negotiations with the opposition.
DAP organising secretary Anthony Loke told Malaysiakini.com on Friday that it is up to the government now.
“We have made our stand known. We made it clear that we are ready to discuss with the government. So now we wait for their response,” said Loke.
Asked if PH will vote against the budget if given the cold shoulder, Loke replied: “It is too soon to tell.”
On Thursday, the PH presidential council urged Muhyiddin to immediately commence discussions with the opposition on Budget 2021, which is scheduled to be tabled on November 6.
The council said the budget should focus on the needs of frontliners, identify new strategies to develop the economy and assist those who have lost their jobs or income due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT