Wan Saiful takes Ahmad Zahid to task over ‘14-day ultimatum’

PETALING JAYA: Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) has taken Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to task over his 14-day ultimatum on reconvening Parliament.

Information chief Wan Saiful Wan Jan said that this was because the Malay Rulers had stated the importance of political stability during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"When Zahid purposely tries to undermine political stability, then who is the one committing treason?" he asked in a Facebook post on Thursday (June 24).

On Monday (June 21), Ahmad Zahid said the government must reconvene Parliament within two weeks and that Umno supported statements by Istana Negara and the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal that called for Parliament to be reconvened as soon as possible.

At present, there is a public debate between both sides of the political divide over the King's opinion that Parliament should reconvene immediately.

On June 16, the King had called for Parliament to reconvene after granting audiences to several party leaders over the previous week to deliberate the Covid-19 situation and the Emergency Proclamation that is due to end on Aug 1.

Wan Saiful, who is also the former CEO of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas), said that Malaysia practises a system of constitutional monarchy and Parliamentary democracy, adding that the King acts on the advice of the prime minister.

"This isn't an issue of treason or not, but the issue of government administration that is based on legislation and the Constitution.

"Therefore, while the notice to call for Parliament to reconvene is 28 days, then which rule is he (Ahmad Zahid) referring to when he issued the 14-day ultimatum?" Wan Saiful asked.

Wan Saiful accused Ahmad Zahid of not understanding the Constitution and Parliamentary Standing Orders.

Wan Saiful also said he was confident that Bersatu's machinery will continue assisting the government in its nationwide Covid-19 vaccination programme, adding that the focus now should be on people's welfare, health and the economy.

"We don't want attention to be diverted from these basic matters. To me, what is important is stability and unity so that our focus remains on the rakyat and not the agenda of any individuals.

"Let us pray for the best solution for the country," he added.

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