Too dangerous to hold elections with Covid-19 still raging in Malaysia, says Dr Mahathir
The former prime minister said he had conveyed as much to Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah when asked his views on when national polls should be held.
Dr Mahathir also told journalists in an online news conference that he had not discussed with the King on when the nationwide state of Emergency should be lifted.
“There was no indication about the end of the Emergency, although he did ask if the election could be held next year or at any time soon.
Asked when he thinks elections should be called, the Langkawi MP said: “When we achieve herd immunity, when we have given vaccines to 80 per cent of the country, at that stage perhaps we are quite safe.”
He cautioned that “anytime before that, there is the danger of what happened after the elections in Sabah happening throughout the country”.
Other matters raised during his audience with the King included the overburdened healthcare system, government aid not reaching the intended recipients, and rising cases of domestic violence during the enforced lockdowns.
He also said he discussed the government’s performance and conveyed his belief that many Malaysians see the current administration as unable to handle the current crisis.
“The rakyat is left feeling uneasy with this government and they see it as a failed government.
“Concerning social issues, there are many as well, like suicide cases, sexual harassment cases at home and such incidents, and children who cannot go to school.
“The reality is the people reject and do not trust the government and the rakyat is seen as wanting a new government or administrative power to be formed,” he added.
Dr Mahathir was among other political leaders including PAS deputy president Datuk Seri Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, MCA president Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, and Parti Warisan president Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal who were granted an audience before the King today.
Their royal audiences are believed to have discussed the current Covid-19 situation and the state of Emergency, among other matters. MALAY MAIL
Tuan Ibrahim: King was cordial but serious during meeting
PETALING JAYA: The King was in a cordial mood when he continued meeting with political party leaders to discuss the political landscape amidst the Emergency and showed his concern over the Covid-19 situation in the country, says Datuk Seri Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man.
The PAS deputy president, who had met with Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah on Thursday (June 10) morning said the meeting lasted almost an hour where matters about the Emergency and reconvening the Parliament session also came up.
“Tuanku was very open and cordial when discussing the matters but his tone turned serious when we brought up matters concerning recent Covid-19 cases, ” he said in a statement later.
Tuan Ibrahim was representing party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, who could not make it due to illness.
The Kubang Kerian MP and Environment and Water Minister arrived at Istana Negara around 10.20am and left about an hour later without addressing pressmen.
Tuan Ibrahim said PAS will continue aiding in the fight against Covid-19 and has ordered its machinery to mobilise all efforts to help push the country’s vaccination rollout and assist communities in need of aid.
“On behalf of PAS, I thank the King for granting us an audience to present our stand on current matters, ” he said.
The King started meeting political party leaders on Wednesday (June 9) to discuss the new political landscape amidst the Emergency that is scheduled to end on Aug 1.
He has since met with Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia president.
Opposition leaders including PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and Parti Amanah Negara chief Mohamad Sabu also had an audience with the King on Wednesday (June 9).
The King continued granting audiences to other leaders on Thursday including MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong, Parti Pejuang Tanah Air pro-tem chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal. ANN
MALAY MAIL / ANN