Muhyiddin misread King’s discretion to appoint new PM, says lawyer
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has misinterpreted a provision in the Federal Constitution when explaining why he was reluctant to resign from office, a lawyer said.
Abdul Shukor Ahmad said Muhyiddin had to vacate his office if the majority of MPs withdrew support for him.
He said it was for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to assess who has the majority to be Muhyiddin’s successor.
“He has misread Article 43 (2) (a) and put himself in the shoes of the monarch,” Shukor told FMT.
He said a careful reading of that article states that the King appoints a prime minister who, in his judgment, is likely to command the confidence of the majority.
Shukor said that in appointing a new prime minister from among the current 220 MPs, the King is not expected to look at a precise mathematical formula.
“The monarch can use his discretion to form an opinion as to who has majority support and it does not mean it must be 50% or more,” he said.
Shukor said support for the newly-appointed prime minister could either increase or decrease and the final test was on the floor of the Dewan Rakyat.
“It is at the House that the prime minister’s legitimacy is determined as he must get (the) support of at least 111 of the 220 MPs to remain in office,” he said.
Shukor said the new prime minister had many options like winning the support of other MPs or political parties to form a coalition government or enter into an agreement to help pass money bills.
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Earlier today in a televised address, Muhyiddin admitted that his legitimacy was questioned as several MPs had retracted their support for him.
It is believed about 100 MPs remain with the prime minister while 120 are against him.
Muhyiddin said he had a choice of resigning or requesting the King to dissolve the Dewan Rakyat.
“However, at the current moment none of the MPs can prove they enjoy majority support for the King to appoint a prime minister,” Muhyiddin said.
Lawyer Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla said Muhyiddin has to tender his resignation as his public address is an admission that he no longer enjoyed majority support. FMT
Muhyiddin misread King’s discretion to appoint new PM