Anwar Ibrahim still insists on confidence vote in Parliament

(FMT) – The opposition welcomes Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s reform proposals but he still needs to go through a vote of confidence when the Dewan Rakyat sits to confirm that he has majority support, says opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim.

In a statement, Anwar said the confidence motion was still necessary as it was based on the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s decree given to political party leaders when they met the King at Istana Negara on Aug 17.

“Pakatan Harapan (PH) will continue to play its role as the opposition by pressing on good governance and being steadfast in combating corruption.

“It must be stressed that we want the opposition to be given commensurate treatment and we will play our role as necessary as a check-and-balance mechanism on the executive,” he said.

Recently, de facto law minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar told a press conference that Ismail’s appointment had been given the King’s consent and there was no need to table a motion of confidence in Parliament.

Wan Junaidi said the prime minister told him this during his first Cabinet meeting.

Meanwhile, Anwar also welcomed Ismail’s proposed reform package announced yesterday, saying it was a good start following the prime minister’s meeting with PH leaders on Aug 25.

However, he maintained that discussions were still ongoing in order to reach a consensus in managing the pandemic, protecting lives and addressing the ongoing economic crises.

“Therefore, among others, PH has also proposed an additional government allocation of RM45 billion to immediately alleviate the people’s burden.

“PH’s priority is based on parliamentary and fiscal reforms, pro-rakyat programmes, a bank loan moratorium for the M40 and B40, and judicial independence.”

In a statement yesterday, Ismail said the Cabinet had agreed to a number of key reforms, including a 10-year term limit for the prime minister, an anti-hopping law, the lowering of the voting age to 18, and the appointment of opposition members to the National Recovery Council.

Meanwhile, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng wanted a timeline for the implementation of Ismail’s proposals and for them to be accompanied by economic and healthcare reforms.

“The seven political reforms outlined by Ismail yesterday are based on what was offered by the failed former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin in a last-ditch effort to save his government, but rejected by the opposition as untrustworthy.

“As the new prime minister, and to show his sincerity and commitment about implementing these reforms, Ismail must do substantially better than his predecessor, particularly reforms in the economy and public healthcare,” he said in a statement today.