PETALING JAYA: Until the vote is cast on the floor that MPs have lost confidence in Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, he remains the Prime Minister and the government stays intact, says former Federal Court judge Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram.
And if the Prime Minister receives a vote of confidence from the majority of the MPs in the Dewan Rakyat, then it would be difficult to remove him constitutionally, he added.
Sri Ram said that unless there is a vote of no-confidence against Muhyiddin, or unless he resigns, nothing will happen.
He also said that even though Umno president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, in announcing the retraction of Umno support for Perikatan Nasional, has repeatedly mentioned Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, the palace is not duty-bound to do anything based on the Federal Constitution.
“As of now, Istana Negara needs to do nothing, as a vote ousting Muhyiddin did not take place on the floor of the Parliament. This announcement of withdrawal of support happened outside the august House.
“Until the vote is cast on the floor that the MPs have lost confidence in Muhyiddin, he remains the Prime Minister and the government stays intact.
“Should a vote of no-confidence be given against Muhyiddin, only then is the King duty-bound to tell the Prime Minister (PM) to resign.
“If the PM refuses to resign, he can then advise the King to dissolve Parliament.
“However, the King has the right to refuse a dissolution, and then the PM and the Cabinet must resign,” said Sri Ram.
He also said that if the King wants to avoid a general election, then he can appoint a person whom he believes command a majority from the MPs.
“This person then will be appointed as the PM and he can then form the Cabinet,” he said when asked to comment on Muhyiddin’s announcement that he will not resign and will move a vote of confidence in Parliament next month to prove he has the backing of the majority of MPs.