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Breaking News : Sarawak State Assembly Officially Ended Once Emergency Is Lifted – State Election To Be Called Within 16 Days

The five-year term of the Sarawak state legislative assembly officially ends on Sunday (June 6), but it won’t be dissolved until Aug 1 due to Malaysia’s state of emergency.

Sarawak state Speaker Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar said he would inform the Election Commission of the matter, adding that Section 18 of the Emergency Ordinance stipulates that it shall prevail in the event of any conflict or inconsistency between its provisions and any other written law.

Malaysia’s King, Sultan Abdullah Ahmad Shah declared the state of emergency for the country under Article 150 of the Federal Constitution, from Jan 12 to Aug 1, allowing a freer hand for the federal government to battle the Covid-19 pandemic.

Malaysia is battling a severe third wave of Covid-19 in the last few months, hitting a record 9,020 in daily cases last week (May 29) and a record number of daily deathsm 126, on Wednesday (June 2).

The emergency has led to the suspension of all federal parliament and state assembly sittings and also by-elections, among other things.

Said Datuk Amar Asfia in a statement on Sunday: “The current term of the Dewan Undangan Negeri (state asembly) therefore will not expire on June 6, 2021. It continues to function until Aug 1, 2021, which is specified in the Emergency Ordinance.”

He noted that four Sarawak by-elections that should have taken place have been postponed.

They are the Batu Sapi and Gerik parliamentary by-elections, which should have been held on Dec 5 last year; and the two state assembly by-elections for the Bugaya seat in Sabah and the Melor seat in Kelantan, which should have been held on Jan 16.

He said this “conclusively proves beyond any shadow of doubt that an election or by-election cannot be held where the consent of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King) is withheld”.

Mr Asfia also said Sarawak’s 82 legislative assembly members and the state Cabinet ministers would continue to perform their duties and responsibilities under the umbrella of the emergency ordinance.

Pilihan Raya Negeri (PRN) Sarawak Ke-12 yang tertangguh akibat Proklamasi Darurat, mesti diadakan dalam tempoh 60 hari dari tarikh Ordinan Darurat dibatalkan pada 21 Julai lalu.

Ini bermakna PRN Sarawak Ke-12 perlu diadakan sebelum 18 September depan.

Felo Penyelidik (Undang-undang dan Perlembagaan), Pusat Polisi Perdana, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), Prof Madya Dr Muhammad Fathi Yusof, berkata PRN itu antara kesan utama kepada pembatalan enam Ordinan Darurat yang dibuat oleh Kabinet.

“Dewan Undangan Negeri (DUN) Sarawak perlu diisytiharkan terbubar kerana tamat tempoh lima tahun.

“PRN Sarawak Ke-12 perlu dilaksanakan dalam tempoh 60 hari dari tarikh ordinan tidak lagi berkuat kuasa,” katanya dalam satu kenyataan, hari ini.

DUN Sarawak sepatutnya dibubarkan pada 7 Jun lalu, namun proses itu tidak dapat dilaksanakan kerana tertakluk kepada Ordinan Darurat (Kuasa-Kuasa Perlu) 2021.

Berikutan itu, semua Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri (ADUN) Sarawak kekal sehingga DUN dibubarkan mengikut Perkara 18(1) Perlembagaan Negeri Sarawak.

Ketua Menteri Sarawak, Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Abang Openg awal bulan ini berkata, kerajaan negeri belum membincangkan tarikh sesuai mengadakan PRN Sarawak Ke-12, walaupun separuh iaitu 1.3 juta rakyatnya sudah mendapat vaksin COVID-19.

Abang Johari berkata, pihaknya mahu memberi tumpuan terhadap usaha melengkapkan vaksinasi kepada 2.08 juta rakyat yang layak.

Sementara itu, Muhammad Fathi berkata, semua kerusi Parlimen dan DUN yang kosong dalam tempoh Proklamasi Darurat seperti DUN Melor di Kelantan perlu diisi melalui Pilihan Raya Kecil (PRK), juga dalam tempoh 60 hari Ordinan Darurat tidak lagi berkuat kuasa.

“Jika darurat khusus untuk Parlimen Batu Sapi, Parlimen Gerik dan DUN Bugaya juga ditamatkan, PRK untuk kerusi-kerusi berkenaan perlu dilaksanakan,” katanya.

Beliau berkata, pembatalan Ordinan Darurat juga boleh membuka laluan kepada

Pilihan Raya Umum Ke-15 (PRU-15) sekiranya Perdana Menteri, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin tidak mendapat sokongan untuk kelulusan Belanjawan 2022 atau kalah dalam apa-apa pengundian di Dewan Rakyat yang boleh ditafsirkan sebagai hilang kepercayaan ahli dewan.

Katanya, berdasarkan Perkara 40(3), jika tiada calon lain yang layak dilantik Perdana Menteri, Yang di-Pertuan Agong boleh membubarkan Parlimen atas kehendak Perdana Menteri.

“Dalam tempoh 60 hari selepas pembubaran Parlimen, PRU-15 perlu dilaksanakan di seluruh negara,” katanya.

Dalam aspek penguatkuasaan, beliau berkata, kadar denda yang tinggi bagi kesalahan di bawah Akta Pencegahan dan Pengawalan Penyakit Berjangkit 1988 yang dipinda melalui Ordinan Darurat dengan sendirinya terbatal dan kadar denda asal yang lebih rendah perlu berkuat kuasa.

“Kita doakan agar perkembangan yang berlaku ini tidak menjejaskan usaha yang sedang dilaksanakan bagi menghadapi wabak COVID-19.

“Semoga Allah kurniakan jalan keluar yang terbaik kepada kita semua dalam menghadapi dugaan yang besar ini,” katanya.

Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri (Parlimen dan Undang-Undang), Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan hari ini, mengumumkan kerajaan tidak akan menasihati Yang di-Pertuan Agong untuk menyambung Proklamasi Darurat yang akan tamat pada 1 Ogos ini.

Katanya, berdasarkan Perkara 150(3) Perlembagaan Persekutuan, semua ordinan yang dibuat sepanjang tempoh Proklamasi Darurat turut dibatalkan dan kerajaan menarik balik ordinan berkenaan pada 21 Julai lalu.

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