Follow SOPs strictly during elections, we have no other choice, pleads PM

PETALING JAYA: Elections are unavoidable and it is of utmost importance to abide by SOPs, especially for those in remote areas in Batu Sapi, Sabah and the state of Sarawak, says Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

In a live telecast speech on Saturday (Oct 31), Muhyiddin made an impassioned plea to everyone to abide by SOPs set by the authorities, especially during an election as the government is bound by the Federal Constitution and has no powers to stop the process of democracy.

He said the only option left to the government is to tighten the SOPs for elections, as only a proclamation of a state of emergency can stop elections from taking place.

He also said that although there were calls to screen those who returned from red zones to green zones to vote be screened, there is a possibility of asymptomatic patients who would have carried the virus and died before being detected.

"Sabah has the highest number of cases at 13,701, followed by Selangor 4,360 cases, Kuala Lumpur (2,991), Kedah (2,080) and Negri Sembilan (1,516).

The Batu Sapi by-election has been set for Dec 5 and the state election of Sarawak might happen anytime soon and cannot be avoided. This is because under the Constitution, an election must be held within 60 days of a vacant seat. The Sarawak state constitution too states that a state election must be held within 60 days of the dissolution of the state assembly.

"Election Commission chief had told me that many of the EC staff fear of reporting for duty at Batu Sapi for fear of contracting Covid-19," said Muhyiddin.

He also stated that the Perikatan Nasional government will do everything it can to make the ruling and opposition MPs come together to pass the Budget 2021.

"We only want to win our fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. Let us set aside our political differences," said Muhyiddin.


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