THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
According to Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, PAS will be meeting Umno tomorrow to discuss the proposed vote of confidence for Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. However, one thing to note is that a failed vote of confidence becomes a vote of no confidence. Furthermore, if the vote of confidence fails to get at least 112 votes in support of it, it will not be Mahathir who falls but the government that will fall.
Malaysia practices the Westminster parliamentary system. Hence, if a vote of no confidence is passed against the Prime Minister, the entire government falls or has to resign, not just the Prime Minister.
A motion of no confidence in Parliament allows MPs to hold a vote on whether they want the government to continue. If the government loses the vote, MPs have 14 days to express their support for an alternative government. If an alternative government cannot command a majority in Parliament in that time, a general election would be held.
If Mahathir loses his vote of confidence, Pakatan Harapan falls and GE15 must be held within 60 days
Hence what is at stake here is not Mahathir or Anwar Ibrahim but Pakatan Harapan. A vote against Mahathir is a vote against Pakatan Harapan. That is how it works.
Therefore, Pakatan Harapan has no choice but to support the vote of confidence being tabled by PAS. If they refuse to support the vote of confidence and the vote of confidence fails, then Pakatan Harapan falls and the fifteenth general election or GE15 has to be called within 60 days.
But then, if Pakatan Harapan supports the vote of confidence and they get 112 or more MPs to support the PAS motion, Mahathir will get to stay on as Prime Minister and he need not resign and hand power to Anwar in May this year.
Anwar has no choice but to support the vote of confidence for Mahathir or else Pakatan Harapan will fall
Hence the two choices open to Pakatan Harapan would be:
1) do not support the vote of confidence and make way for GE15, or
2) support the vote of confidence and allow Mahathir to serve as PM until the next general election.
Has PAS outwitted Pakatan Harapan?
Of course, they can always ‘play dirty’ by getting the Speaker to block the vote of confidence by PAS. Then Pakatan Harapan gets to remain as the government and Anwar gets to take over as Prime Minister in three months’ time.
Source : Malaysia Today