KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 18 (NNN-Bernama) — Malaysian Parliamentarians have handed over their their statutory declarations (SDs) to the king Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah on their choice for the new prime minister before the stipulated 4pm deadline Wednesday.
A total of 220 Parlimentarians from from both side of the divide in the Dewan Rakyat (lower house) were told on Tuesday to nominate an elected member of the legislative assembly as the successor to Muhyiddin Yassin, who quit from the prime minister’s post on Monday as he no longer commanded the majority in the house.
After intense speculation two leading contenders for the post have emerged, Anwar Ibrahim of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition and Ismail Sabri Yaakob of the Perikatan Nasional (PN).
However, Al-Sultan Abdullah had decreed that the new prime minister to be appointed has to seek a vote of confidence as soon as possible to determine his legitimacy and majority support in the Dewan Rakyat.
Comptroller of the Royal Household of Istana Negara (national palace) Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin, in a statement issued Wednesday, said His Majesty had decreed this following an audience with leaders and representatives of major political parties Tuesday.
Muhyiddin, who led the PN coalition, was sworn in as the country’s eighth prime minister on March 1, 2020 following the resignation of then prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Feb 24 that ended the rule of PH.
However, things came to a head for Muhyiddin’s fragile coalition recently after UMNO, one of the key partners of PN, withdrew its support for him and PN, leaving the coalition without a clear majority.
Al-Sultan Abdullah accepted Muhyiddin’s resignation as prime minister and that of the entire Cabinet on Monday. His Majesty also consented to appoint Muhyiddin to serve as a caretaker prime minister pending the appointment of a new prime minister.