Nanta: It is up to the EC

PETALING JAYA: There is no Cabinet decision to hold the Melaka and Sarawak state elections simultaneously, says Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi.

The Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister said the Cabinet did not make such a decision and that it should be left to the Election Commission (EC) to decide.

“There is no such decision. It is up to the EC,” he said.

The EC will hold a special meeting today to discuss the Melaka state election.

Sarawak remains under a state of Emergency until Feb 2, 2022, and as such, no state election will be held until the Emergency is lifted.

According to Article 21(3) of the state constitution, the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly should have been dissolved on June 7.

But it does not have the power under Paragraph 15(1)(a) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021 to suspend the dissolution of a legislative assembly.

However, Section 2(2) of the Emergency (Essential Powers) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021, issued in conjunction with the Emergency Proclamation for Sarawak, states that the operation of the Proclamation of Emergency may be terminated earlier by the King after consultation with the governor.

It is understood that several high-level meetings of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) have taken place recently as part of its preparations if the state election is held as early as November.

On the Sarawak polls, Nanta, who is also GPS secretary-general, said it was best to hold the state election before the year-end monsoon season.

“We are hoping to avoid holding a state election during the rainy season. We are always looking after the welfare of the people.

“Sarawak is one of the states that received the vaccination early. So we hope it can be conducted soon.

“Principally, we also do not want to be ‘governing on borrowed time’.

“As a responsible party and state government, it is best if we can hold the election soon,” he added.

On Saturday, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said two things must be done before the 12th Sarawak state election could be held.

He said firstly, the Emergency Proclamation declared by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah that runs until Feb 2, 2022, would have to be terminated earlier with the King’s consent.

Secondly, he said the Sarawak state election could be held if the King approved the terms agreed upon between Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud with the state government and Chief Minister.

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