Ideas calls for policy-based negotiations amidst hung Parliament

20 Nov 2022 01:09pm
Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) Chief Executive Officer Dr Tricia Yeoh - FILE PIX
Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) Chief Executive Officer Dr Tricia Yeoh - FILE PIX

SHAH ALAM – The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) calls for policy and not patronage-based negotiations as basis of government formation under a hung Parliament circumstance.

Ideas noted that it acknowledged that the 15th General Election (GE15) had resulted in a hung Parliament without a single political coalition winning a simple majority. Hence, as the coalitions began to negotiate with each other to form a federal government, Ideas strongly urged that the negotiations are based on policy and not patronage-type appointments to be distributed.

The non-profit research institute also widely expected that in a coalition of coalitions, Cabinet, Chairs of Government-Linked Companies (GLC) and statutory body positions would need to be provided as a form of reward to as many senior party representatives as possible. However, Ideas encouraged the parties to negotiate on the grounds of laws and policies that were crucially needed to address both economic and institutional reforms for the future.

Its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr Tricia Yeoh commented, “Forming the coalition government is the most urgent over the next few delicate days, and we would caution against money politics being used in this process, where smaller parties must exercise wisdom in using their kingmaker position and power.

"Also, important laws such as the Political Financing Act, Constituency Development Funds Act, Parliamentary Services Act, Fiscal Responsibility Act and Government Procurement Act are more urgent than ever, and we look forward to seeing parties state their strong position on these legislations that can truly transform the administration moving forward.”

Commending on the wide use of anti-corruption messages that emerged during the GE15 campaign, Yeoh Malaysia was tired of the culture of corruption that became deeply embedded within the administration and its ecosystem.

She said the Malay electorate, in particular, had chosen to stand their ground on this issue by turning to Perikatan Nasional as an alternative coalition.

"Thus, if we are to restore the pace of our country’s economic growth and development, addressing good governance will need to be an immediate priority of the government."

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Tricia said the institute looked forward to seeing concrete plans following the National Anti-Corruption Plan (NACP) which would expire in 2023.

She added that bipartisanship in any future government would assure the most optimal outcomes when it comes to championing good governance, anti-corruption and institutional reforms.

Ideas congratulated many of the former members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Political Financing and the institute and looked forward to reconvening the group, including new members, in the immediate future to expedite the Bill’s tabling in Parliament.

Ideas also noted that it was crucial for a government vision to emphasise inclusiveness, understanding and empathy for others, taking into serious consideration the varied needs and expectations of all ethnic and religious communities including those within Sabah and Sarawak.

Yeoh said the institute looked forward to a rules-based process of forming a federal government in which the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong would play an important role in ensuring.

She added that the institute placed hope that the new formation would bring political and economic stability Malaysia desperately needed in order to make serious policy decisions for its future over the next five years.