Harapan top guns to meet on Ismail Sabri’s offer this evening

Pakatan Harapan’s top leaders will hold a meeting at 5pm today to discuss a list of reforms offered by Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

It is learned that during this meeting, the opposition bloc may decide if they will sign a confidence and supply agreement (CSA) with the new government.

If the agreement materialises, there should be a more stable political environment for the newly minted premier, who holds a slim majority, at the upcoming Parliament session which starts Monday.

According to sources within Harapan, top leaders from the coalition’s components PKR, DAP, and Amanah had a closed-door meeting with Ismail Sabri yesterday, where they discussed a CSA.

However, sources indicated there are several other issues that have yet to be finalised, including a number of demands by Harapan.

“Today’s meeting will discuss the PM’s offers and the meeting between leaders and the PM (yesterday),” said a Harapan party source.

“If everything goes well, signing (of the CSA) should be by tomorrow. We are expecting slightly more than what the PM announced,” said another.

When contacted, Harapan chief secretary Saifuddin Nasution Ismail confirmed that the Harapan presidential council is going to hold a virtual meeting this evening to discuss the CSA.

“I can confirm that at 5pm today the Pakatan Harapan council will hold a virtual meeting to discuss the progress in discussions between representatives from the government and opposition,” he told Malaysiakini.

Saifuddin, who is PKR secretary-general and sits in the committee that represents Harapan in the negotiation, described the prime minister’s offers yesterday as “okay” but said there are other details they will announce later.

He was tight-lipped on what other issues are being discussed.

Similarly, Amanah secretary-general Hatta Ramli confirms that discussions between the opposition and government have yet to be finalised.

He told Malaysiakini that the press statement by Ismail Sabri yesterday was “an ex-parte announcement”.

“Everything is still on the discussion table. I cannot spell them out for sure at this juncture.

“There has not been a finalised version. If we look at the cabinet’s statement issued by the prime minister yesterday, that was a statement made by their side, or ex-parte.”

When asked if Harapan is ready to sign a CSA with Ismail Sabri before the Parliament session starts on Monday, Hatta said he was not sure and reiterated that the bloc has yet to arrive at a decision.

He said there was also no deadline set for the parties to get into an agreement.

Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob

Ismail Sabri yesterday said that the cabinet in a meeting yesterday agreed to undertake seven institutional reforms:

  1. Table an anti-party hopping law in Parliament.
  2. Amend the Federal Constitution to expedite the implementation of the lowered voting age from 21 years old to 18.
  3. Amend the Constitution to limit the prime minister’s term in office to 10 years.
  4. Ensure equal representation between opposition MPs and government backbenchers in parliamentary special select committees.
  5. All draft legislation including the budget bill will be discussed and agreed upon first, before being tabled in Parliament.
  6. Opposition politicians will be involved in the National Recovery Council to provide input and suggestions for improvement.
  7. The opposition leader will be given the salary and amenities equivalent to a minister.

However, two top Harapan leaders, PKR president Anwar Ibrahim and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, today responded to the offers reiterating Harapan’s position for a RM45 billion fiscal injection, among others.

Anwar also stressed the need for Ismail Sabri to confirm his majority in the upcoming Parliament session.

Covid-19 (Sep 11): 19,550 new cases, S’wak above 3k for seven straight days

The Health Ministry today reported 19,550 new Covid-19 cases.

Sarawak continued to top the list, recording more than 3,000 new Covid-19 cases for the seventh consecutive day, fast becoming an emerging epicentre of the pandemic.

Meanwhile, seven other states also recorded four digits gain in fresh infections with Selangor, Johor and Sabah being particularly elevated.

New cases by states

Sarawak (3,743)
Selangor (2,416)
Johor (2,282)
Sabah (2,163)
Penang (1,865)
Kedah (1,390)
Perak (1,354)
Kelantan (1,320)
Terengganu (953)
Pahang (722)
Kuala Lumpur (555)
Malacca (490)
Negeri Sembilan (198)
Perlis (73)
Putrajaya (24)
Labuan (2)