PUTRAJAYA: Talk that Parliament will be dissolved sometime this week gained greater credence when Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi reminded civil servants of the heavy responsibilities facing them under a caretaker government.
Speaking at the Prime Minister’s Department monthly gathering yesterday, Abdullah said expectations among the people were high that the general election would be called soon.
“The people are anxiously waiting for it and those hoping for support from the people are also ready. Reports in both local and foreign media are also full of talk about the elections.
“But Alhamdulillah (thank God), the Prime Minister is not suffering from any fever,” he quipped.
Abdullah said civil servants should ensure the smooth running of the Government after Parliament was dissolved.
“Civil servants must continue to serve efficiently although the Cabinet ministers will no longer be in office after that because the people will continue to need services from the Government.
“This is not the time for civil servants to take a rest,” he said.
Later in the evening, Abdullah held another round of meetings with Negri Sembilan Mentri Besar Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad, Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Syed Razak Syed Zain and Penang Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Dr Hilmi Yahya to finalise the candidate lists for Umno seats in their states.
Isa refused to divulge any details about the meeting.
“Nothing is final until nomination day,” he said regarding speculation that he might be moved to a parliamentary seat.
Former MCA president and Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ling Liong Sik met Abdullah for about 30 minutes.
It could not be ascertained why Dr Ling met the Prime Minister.
Abdullah’s press secretary Azhar Othman said Abdullah would go to Penang immediately after Parliament was dissolved.
He said Abdullah would plan his campaign trips from his home base.
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