PM Ismail Sabri denies Umno set condition for GE15 date as decision is by consensus

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 1 — The Umno supreme council did not set conditions in its proposed dates to hold the 15th general election (GE15), Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob clarified today.

The prime minister who is also Umno vice-president said that all decisions made by the party leadership are based on consensus and not unilaterally as some have suggested.

“No one ever gave any condition,” he replied to reporters who asked if any condition had been set during the party’s supreme council meeting last night with regards to when the next national polls will be called.

He said the decision is based on consensus from Umno’s top five leaders comprising the president, deputy and three vice-presidents as well as the party’s political bureau.

He also said the Umno supreme council only said party secretary-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan could release a statement on their meeting last night.

“If we want to hold an election and we have strong grounds to speed it up and have consensus, we will do it,” Ismail Sabri told reporters after attending a gathering with teachers at Matrade Tower here.

However, he continued to keep his cards very close to his chest on when he would seek an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to request a dissolution of Parliament.

“Just wait for the announcement date,” he added.

Ismail Sabri also defended Umno against critics who questioned the nationalist Malay party’s haste in having a general election this year, especially after warnings of potential flash floods nationwide from the annual year-end monsoon season.

“Umno has long called for an early election, not recently,” he said and repeated his party’s assertion that they were pushing for early polls so voters can determine who should be in the next government.

“Let the people choose,” Ismail Sabri said.

Umno secretary-general Ahmad issued a statement after the party meeting last night, saying Parliament should be dissolved as soon as possible for the GE15 to be held this year.

Ahmad added that the prime minister will seek an audience with the King, without mentioning when.

In a Facebook post earlier today, Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi asserted that the party supreme council had reached a consensus for the prime minister to propose a dissolution date to the King in line with Article 40(1) of the Federal Constitution.

“It’s time for the Umno machinery nationwide to move faster in a tidy and organised manner to fulfil the rakyat’s aspirations to return stability and prosperity to Malaysia.

“It is most important for GE15 to be called now to ensure a more stable, strong and efficient government is formed for the public good.

“It is most important for GE15 to ensure the federal government will not be sabotaged by enemies sharing the same bed who always have political interests,” Ahmad Zahid wrote.

Zahid had previously scoffed at naysayers who criticised Umno’s insistence on elections being held this year, claiming they said so because they were not prepared to go to the polls and that they were perpetuating a “myth” with their monsoon election predictions.