Up to King when to call for Sarawak polls, says Annuar

Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa observing a songket weaver at Tanoti House in Kuching. — ZULAZHAR SHEBLEE/The Star

KUCHING: It is up to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to decide on when the Sarawak state election should be called as the state is still under an Emergency, says Tan Sri Annuar Musa.

The Communications and Multimedia Minister said while the election is due since the Sarawak Legislative Assembly's term was supposed to expire on June 6, legal aspects relating to the Emergency (Essential Powers) (Sarawak) Ordinance had to be considered.

"I believe the state government is looking at the legal aspects for the election to be called.

"It also has to do with the Emergency Ordinance which is still in force in Sarawak, so the power is with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and Parliament," he told reporters after visiting songket atelier Tanoti House here on Friday (Oct 22).

Annuar also said the state election was discussed during his courtesy call on Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg earlier Friday, but he was not at liberty to disclose any details.

"Yes, there was a discussion (about the election) but I can't share it with the media," he said.

Speculation has been growing in Sarawak that the state assembly will be dissolved soon to pave the way for the state election to take place before the year-end.

The state legislature's term was due to end on June 6, but the polls were put off during the nationwide Emergency due to Covid-19.

When the Emergency was lifted on Aug 2, another Emergency was declared in Sarawak until Feb 2 next year to further suspend the state election.

However, the polls can be held before February should the King consent to lift the Emergency earlier.

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