Upko: Forget snap GE, PM should go for unity government

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s Upko is not keen on a snap general election and wants Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to serve until the end of the term by cutting a deal with the opposition parties.

Party president Datuk Seri Wilfred Madius Tangau (pic) said Muhyiddin should also lift the Emergency as the movement control order had been lifted in most states except for Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Johor and Penang.

Speaking to reporters via an online press conference yesterday, he said the general election was not a good option as last year’s Sabah snap election had sparked the third wave of Covid-19 in the country.

As such, he said, priority should be given to the recovery of the economy and stability of the country following the pandemic that left thousands of people jobless.

He said it was important that Parliament and all state assemblies convene as there was a need to build real political stability.

Disclosing that Upko had sent an open letter to the Prime Minister on Tuesday, Madius said they urged Muhyiddin to seek an inter-party political settlement to replace the Jan 12 Emergency as the basis for his government’s continuity.

“Upko will be the first to support Muhyiddin in leading a bold move to seek cross-party reconciliation for real political stability.

“Let’s work together to enable Malaysia’s best response in pandemic management and economic recovery, ” said the Tuaran MP.

Madius added that the question of commanding the majority in Parliament should not arise in a unity government.

He said Upko understood Muhyiddin’s predicament and assured him the best “democratic and sustainable solution” was through a political ceasefire between the government and the opposition.

He said the ceasefire should be on a Confidence and Supply Agreement (CSA) that would allow the government to govern without the paranoia of being overthrown and the opposition to provide legislative oversight and policy inputs through an inclusive and mature policy-making process.

“This ceasefire, which can last until June 16,2023, the last day of the five-year team before Parliament automatically dissolves, will enable Muhyiddin to focus his energy on the pandemic and economy for the rest of the 14th Parliament’s term, ” Madius said, quoting a letter he sent to the premier.

Under the CSA, he said there should be full functioning Parliament and state legislatures without any administrative obstacles in the name of the pandemic, with virtual or hybrid sittings introduced when necessary.

Maidus also said that he would discuss the matter with Pakatan Harapan and Warisan to pursue his party’s plan for a unity government.

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