PETALING JAYA: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad looks set to be sworn in as the nation’s seventh Prime Minister following Barisan Nasional’s defeat in the general election.
PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail is also expected to be the country’s new Deputy Prime Minister and will become Malaysia’s first woman to be appointed to the position.
For the first time in 61 years since Merdeka, Malaysians voted in a new Federal Government in Pakatan Harapan, led by Dr Mahathir.
He also announced that today and tomorrow would be public holidays, a promise which Pakatan made if it wins.
Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa later confirmed this in a tweet.
According to the Election Commission, Pakatan – which comprises PKR, DAP, Pribumi and Amanah – officially won 112 of the 222 Parliament seats as of 3.40am.
Barisan won 79, PAS won 18, Parti Warisan Sabah won seven, Sabah STAR won one and Independents won three seats.
Pakatan retained Selangor and Penang and swept to victory in Johor, Melaka and Negri Sembilan.
Perak, which has 59 state seats, saw a hung assembly when no one party managed to win a simple majority of 30 seats.
Barisan won 27 seats, Pakatan 29 and PAS three.
Kedah also saw a hung assembly, with Barisan winning three seats, PAS 15 and PKR 18. A simple majority requires 19 seats.
The official results for Sabah had yet to be announced.
Among the big names from Barisan who fell were the presidents of five of the coalition’s 13 component parties.
They were MCA president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, Gerakan president Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong, MIC president Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam, SUPP president Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian and LDP president Datuk Teo Chee Kang.
Among the big names in Barisan who fell were Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan, Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak, Agriculture and Agro-based Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed, Felda chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Samad, Tabung Haji chairman Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim and Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin.
Dr Mahathir told a press conference that Istana Negara had summoned Dr Wan Azizah for an audience following Pakatan’s official win.
He said she was summoned because all Pakatan candidates – with the exception of DAP in Sarawak – had used PKR’s symbol for the election.
Before the election, Pakatan had announced that Dr Mahathir would be Prime Minister if the coalition won.
Dr Mahathir said once he was sworn in as Prime Minister, he would appoint his deputy and Cabinet ministers, adding: “I hope tomorrow (today) we will have a swearing-in ceremony.”
Responding to a question, he said Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim would have to stand for election in order to become prime minister, which he hoped would happen as soon as possible.
Pribumi president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said he would have an audience with Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar later today.
Pakatan vice-president Salahuddin Ayub said the appointment of the state’s mentri besar would be a highlight of the meeting between Muhyiddin and His Majesty at around 10am.