Sunday, July 3, 2022

Ismail Sabri brushes off GE15 calls by ‘one small group’

He says the general election will be held at the right time, when all preparations have been made.

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Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob today said that the 15th general election (GE15) would only be held once all relevant aspects and parties are prepared, appearing to brush aside calls by Barisan Nasional (BN) supporters for the dissolution of Parliament in light of its victory at the Johor state election yesterday.

“Ready or not, let the party leadership decide,” he told reporters after opening an event in Bera today.

“Many more areas need to be studied. Just because one small group wants the general election to be held, do we have to do it? This is a major decision that we have to discuss.”

Ismail was referring to the calls made by BN supporters last night, when the coalition swept to victory in Johor, winning 40 of the 56 seats in the legislative assembly.

A total of 1,426,573 or 54.92% of voters had turned out to vote in the fourth state election since 2020.

It was BN’s second victory in a state election after Melaka, and seen as part of efforts by convicted former prime minister Najib Razak and his ex-deputy Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to consolidate Umno’s position ahead of GE15.

Speaking today, though, Ismail said there were procedures to be followed.

“I need to have an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to get his consent. We can only hold GE15 if he gives his consent.

“Wait for the right time,” he added.

On the memorandum of understanding with Pakatan Harapan, signed in September last year, Ismail said it was too early to discuss what would happen once the agreement ends on July 31.

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