PETALING JAYA: The Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, has hailed the political stability in the country.
He also advised MPs to “stop politicking day and night” and focus instead on issues affecting the rakyat.
In his address at the opening of the first meeting of the fifth session of the 14th Parliament, Sultan Abdullah said he was “very grateful” for the current political stability and bipartisan cooperation that has been achieved thanks to the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed by the federal government and the opposition.
“We are very pleased and grateful for the political stability following the bipartisan cooperation through the MoU on transformation and political stability signed between the government and the opposition,” he said.
“Alhamdulillah, at present, the political climate is more stable to ensure the success of the nation’s development agenda for the benefit of the people and the nation’s future.
“As a result of this agreement and maturity, amendments to the Federal Constitution related to the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) were successfully approved by more than two-thirds of Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara members last December. Political maturity as such is eagerly awaited by all.”
The bill gives recognition to the demands and special status of Sabah and Sarawak upon joining Malaysia in the Federal Constitution, in line with the provisions in MA63, thereby strengthening their position in the Federation of Malaysia.
Ending his address with a pantun, Sultan Abdullah advised the MPs to “stop politicking day and night” and focus instead on issues affecting the rakyat.
On the issue of corruption, Sultan Abdullah said this matter needed serious attention to ensure transparency and integrity in the administration.
“We believe the government is currently implementing initiatives under the National Anti-Corruption Plan (NACP) through enforcement, prevention and education to combat all forms of corruption.
“The government is also improving its service delivery system through digital initiatives to ensure greater transparency, efficiency and professionalism,” he said.
NACP 2019-2023 was introduced by the Pakatan Harapan government in 2019. It outlined six priority areas vulnerable to corruption – political governance, public sector administration, public procurement, corporate governance, legal and judiciary sectors, and law enforcement.
The plan underwent its mid-term review last year.
Sultan Abdullah highlighted the country’s 3.1% economic growth last year, after it experienced a contraction of 5.6% in 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said the economic growth had shown the effectiveness of the eight series of assistance and stimulus packages announced in 2020 and 2021, totalling RM530 billion, in addition to the annual budget allocation.
He also highlighted other indicators of economic recovery such as declining unemployment rates and improving labour market conditions.
He complimented the government for receiving global recognition for its proactive actions in accelerating and improving the nation’s investment and trade performance, citing the Milken Institute Global Opportunity Index 2022, which ranked Malaysia as one the most attractive investment destinations for foreign investors among emerging Southeast Asian economies.
On infrastructure developments, the King welcomed mega projects such as the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project, the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS), the Mass Rapid Transit Line 3 (MRT3), the Central Spine Road (CSR), the West Coast Expressway (WCE), the Sarawak-Sabah Link Road, and the Pan Borneo Highway
“The implementation of these strategic projects will provide comfort and connectivity to various locations as well as generate development spillover effects to all regions and further improve the living standards of our people,” he said.
He called for the infrastructure development of new growth centres in Sabah and Sarawak to be accelerated following the proposed relocation of Indonesia’s capital to Kalimantan.
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