PETALING JAYA: Muda president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman has been challenged to vacate his parliamentary seat and force a by-election, following Muda’s decision to end support for the unity government.
The decision left the government without a two-thirds majority in the Dewan Rakyat, just a day after Pakatan Harapan had restored the supermajority by winning the Pulai parliamentary seat in a by-election.
RSN Rayer of DAP who is MP for Jelutong, said the loss of the two-thirds majority due to Muda’s exit would hurt efforts to carry out legal and political reforms that require constitutional amendments.
He expressed disappointment that Muda had left the day after the Pulai success. “Why are they doing it now after the people of Johor have shown us that they want a stable (unity) government?” Rayer said.
Another MP from Pakatan Harapan, R Yuneswaran of PKR, said Syed Saddiq must vacate the Muar seat because he had won by partnering with PH.
“Muar folks voted for him simply because he was with PH, and PH voters will be very disappointed with him now,” Yuneswaran told FMT.
Yuneswaran, who is MP for Segamat, said PH would want to have a by-election in Muar.
However, Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Karim, also of PKR, said that he respected Muda’s decision and conveyed his good wishes to Syed Saddiq and the party.
“It is a good development if Muda wants to build a ‘third force’ in Malaysian politics by giving healthy competition to the PH-BN alliance and Perikatan Nasional.
“A third force that comprises Muda and Parti Sosialis Malaysia is a healthy development in Malaysian politics that would give wider options to Malaysians,” said Hassan.
Muda has one seat in the 222-member Dewan Rakyat through Syed Saddiq.
He had first been elected in 2018 on a PH ticket as a member of Bersatu which was then in the coalition. He formed Muda after Bersatu left PH in 2020, causing the fall of the PH government led by Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Syed Saddiq narrowly won re-election in 2022 as a Muda candidate, against challengers from PN and BN, when PH decided not to contest the seat.
After the elections, PH and BN formed the unity government in an alliance with East Malaysian parties and currently holds 147 seats in the Dewan Rakyat, one short of a two-thirds majority.
As an ally of the coalition, Muda had provided support for confidence and supply measures.
The opposition comprises PN with 74 seats through PAS (43) and Bersatu (31).
Syed Saddiq, who announced earlier today that Muda was leaving the government bloc, said he had informed the Speaker of the Dewan Rakyat. The Speaker will decide where Syed Saddiq will now be seated.
The Dewan Rakyat is meeting in special session from tomorrow for the mid-term review of the 12th Malaysia Plan.