Muda's exit from PH could trigger by-election - Experts

13 Sep 2023 07:30am
If Muda decides to part ways with PH, it leads to potential by-elections and Malaysia's political future would be questioned - FILEPIX
If Muda decides to part ways with PH, it leads to potential by-elections and Malaysia's political future would be questioned - FILEPIX

SHAH ALAM - Muda's decision to part ways with Pakatan Harapan (PH) will lead to potential by-elections.

It would also result in political uncertainty in the country, analysts say.

International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) Political Science Association Professor Dr Syaza Shukri said that although Muda claims there is no concrete evidence of PH support in their victories, the trend suggests that Muda benefited from PH's support.

"Since 2018, Muda's success in Muar appears to be closely tied to PH support, but it's important to remember that Muda competes on its own ticket," she said.

Syaza further emphasised that triggering another by-election in Johor may not be in the public's best interest at this time.

Meanwhile, Singapore Institute of International Affairs senior fellow Dr Oh Ei Sun emphasised that there is no legal requirement for Muda to vacate their seats.

However, it is a matter of political morality and ethics, he said.

"Considering that Muda disassociated itself from the ruling coalition and secured their seats with support from the coalition's component party, it would be a political courtesy for Muda to vacate them. Yet, there is no legal obligation for Muda to do so," he added.

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Oh also highlighted that if Muda's president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman were to resign, it would lead to by-elections, including for the state seat.

Commenting further, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) School of Social Sciences Professor Datuk Dr Sivamurugan Pandian said if Muda decides to quit being friendly towards PH, then they should reconsider their decision.

"We don't know what the agreement was between MUDA and PH when they contested the 15th general election (GE15).

"If there is such an agreement that if they decide to quit being friendly towards PH (because they are not PH coalition members), then they should reconsider their decision.

"If they vacate and their decision is accepted by the Speaker, we will have another by-election as well," he expressed.

Former MP Xavier Jayakumar emphasised that PH played a significant role in Muda's success by providing them with a platform to voice their concerns.

"Hence, it’s important to compromise and sacrifice in the current political climate, as a by-election would be triggered if Muda decides to vacate their seats," he expressed.

On Sunday, Muda withdrew its support for the Unity government and chose to be the third-force opposition.

In a video posted on Facebook, Syed Saddiq said the party has informed Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul of the matter through a letter.

He said the decision was made after discussions were held with the party's leadership.

"This is a tough decision, but it must be done. The road ahead will be long and lonely, but worth it as Malaysia always comes first," he said in the video.