The opposition should not waste any more time trying to defeat Budget 2021 through bloc votes, said an Umno supreme council member.
Mohd Razlan Rafii said this is as it is clear that they don’t have the numbers to pull off a victory.
“I see that the clash between Warisan and (PKR president) Anwar Ibrahim is at its maximum peak. I don’t expect them to reach a firm consensus.
“It’s difficult for them to win any (bloc) votes… so don’t waste so much time,” he told Malaysiakini.
Warisan had said that it will not partake in bloc votes due to dissatisfaction with Anwar. The party is pushing for new opposition leadership.
Pakatan Harapan MPs have told Malaysiakini that Anwar had promised to resign as opposition leader should he fail to prove that he has a majority by this week. Anwar’s office, however, denied this.
Meanwhile, Razlan said the opposition should also forget about planning any ambushes to vote down the budget when the attendance of government MPs is low.
“Should we put the future of the people, the budget, development, and country in the hands of luck?
“Ambushes are meant to satisfy ourselves, not the people… If the opposition has lost (more than) twice, they should stop trying,” he added.
However, the Umno leader encouraged opposition MPs to continue debating the budget with the intent of having the government accept their suggestions and amending the supply bill.
Previously, Umno had sent signals that it may withhold support for the budget.
However, this changed when some of the party’s demands were met by Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz last week.
This included expanding the number of Employees Provident Fund (EPF) contributors who can withdraw from their Account 1.
However, Umno’s Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah has boycotted the budget votes, in protest of Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s leadership.