PM: Emergency declaration not a military coup, no curfew

Yiswaree Palansamy
·2-min read
A man watches a live telecast of Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin's speech in Kuala Lumpur January 12, 2020. — Picture by Miera Zulyana
A man watches a live telecast of Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin's speech in Kuala Lumpur January 12, 2020. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 — The Emergency declaration invoked by the government is not a military coup, nor will there be any curfew, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said today.

He said the government will continue to perform its functions as usual.

“I want to stress that the Emergency declaration by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is not a form of military coup.

“Curfew will also not be imposed. Instead, throughout this Emergency declaration period, the civilian government will continue to function,” he said in a live address this morning.

Muhyiddin also assured Malaysians that the judiciary will also continue to function, and carry out its duty without any intervention from his government.

"I also assure you that during this period of Emergency, the judiciary will continue to function to uphold law and justice. The Perikatan Nasional government will continue to defend the independence of the judiciary and will never interfere in the affairs of the courts.

"The judiciary will continue to be the beacon of justice in our country and I will never interfere in the business of the court," he added.

Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah consented to the proclamation of Emergency in the country until August 1, or until the current wave of Covid-19 infections subside.

Comptroller of the Royal Household Datuk Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin said in a statement that the decision was made after the Agong had audiences with Muhyiddin, Chief Secretary to the government Tan Sri Mohd Zuki Ali, Attorney-General Tan Sri Idrus Harun, Health Director-General Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, Election Commission chairman Datuk Abdul Ghani Salleh, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador, and Chief of the Armed Forces Tan Sri Affendi Buang.

The Conference of Rulers were also consulted over the decision.

The Emergency was invoked under Article 150(1) of the Federal Constitution which states that the Agong can call it if he is “satisfied that a grave emergency exists whereby the security, or the economic life, or public order in the Federation or any part thereof is threatened”.

An emergency committee will be formed consisting of government and Opposition MPs and relevant health experts to determine if the Emergency will be ended early.

The decree came just a day after Putrajaya announced a new movement control order affecting six states for two weeks starting tomorrow.

Muhyiddin had sought an Emergency last October after Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim claimed to have the support of over 120 MPs. His attempt was rejected by the Agong then.

Sultan Abdullah also called on the MPs not to rattle the country’s administration but to set aside their political differences for the public good.

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