Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob speaks to reporters at World Trade Centre Kuala Lumpur October 9, 2022. — Bernama pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 9 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob today said that the issue of a loss of confidence in the government does not arise despite 12 Perikatan Nasional (PN) Cabinet ministers’ letter to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to object to a general election during the year-end monsoon season.
He said that the government is still functional because the prime minister still has the support of more than 112 federal lawmakers to command the Parliament.
“A lot of people just talk and talk but never refer to the Federal Constitution. The issue of loss of support is only when a certain prime minister loses the 112 majority support,” he told reporters after attending the national-level Maulidur Rasul celebration at the World Trade Centre (WTC) here.
Article 43(4) states that if the prime minister ceases to command the confidence of the majority of the members of the House of Representatives, then, unless at his request the Agong dissolves Parliament, the prime minister shall tender the resignation of the Cabinet.
He also said that even if the Cabinet members were to resign, the government could still function as they can be replaced.
“There is no resignation, just a letter written to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong asking that the parliament is not dissolved.
“And the power to dissolve Parliament is between the prime minister and the Agong,” he said.
He was once again asked the date for 15th general election (GE15), to which the prime minister replied: “It’s okay, we’ll wait. We wait first. I’ve said it before, for this dissolution (issue), just wait for the announcement.”
On October 7, Umno secretary-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan claimed the current federal government has lost “40 per cent of its legitimacy” after PN ministers sent a letter to the King to object to a general election during the year-end monsoon season.
He described the PN letter to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong akin to breaking ranks with the government as such issues are supposed to be resolved within the Cabinet.
Last Thursday, despite being opposed to the dissolution of Parliament anytime soon to trigger snap elections this year, PN secretary-general Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin said the coalition has not withdrawn its support for the prime minister, who is from Umno.
Hamzah, who is also Bersatu secretary-general, was asked if the much-talked about letter sent to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong implied that PN MPs no longer had confidence in Ismail Sabri’s ability to lead the federal government.