Ministers from Umno will remain in the Cabinet despite calls at the party’s general assembly last weekend for ministers and deputy ministers from the Malay party to resign ahead of a decision on its ties with the Perikatan Nasional bloc.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said he had advised them not to resign, taking into consideration the interests of the people and the country.
“At the moment, several Umno ministers hold important portfolios related to the main focus of the government.
“Therefore, I do not want their resignation to affect all government plans to overcome the Covid-19 problem and to revive the country’s economy,” he said in a statement today.
Muhyiddin said that Umno ministers had met him on Monday to ask for his advice on their position in the Cabinet following the decision at the party’s general assembly to cut ties with Bersatu in the 15th general election.
Umno adviser Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah had said that ministers from the party should resign while those holding positions in government-linked companies should also step down.
He said this would send a strong message to Muhyiddin that he no longer has the majority to rule.
“How can he insist he has the majority when our people are withdrawing? All this while, he has had our support. If our people withdraw… and stop supporting the Perikatan Nasional (PN) leadership, I think they will just collapse,” Razaleigh, or Ku Li, told reporters in response to the presidential address.
In his speech at the general assembly, Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claimed that the decision to cut ties with the PN government reflected grassroots’ sentiments, repeating his allegations that Muhyiddin’s Bersatu had relegated Umno to playing second fiddle.
Party leaders had earlier said that Umno would still remain in the government until the dissolution of Parliament to make way for the 15th general election.
Muhyiddin today said the Cabinet would continue functioning as usual, and that all government initiatives would be carried out as planned.