Good move by PM to engage with Opposition, says analyst

By John Isaac

A POLITICAL analyst has described as a “well-calculated move” by the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to have entered into an agreement with Pakatan Harapan (PH) leaders on several matters including good governance.

“In fact, I can say it is more than just a brilliant move. By having the ‘pact’ with the opposition, Ismail is also seen as fully complying with the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong’s decree for the new federal government to be united and stable,” said Dick Lembang Dugun.

The lecturer with the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas), commended it as ‘a good solution’ to help reduce politicking and hence enable the government to focus on efforts to restore the country’s economy and fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

“This is what the people want to see…for the political leaders to reduce politicking and to work together for the benefit of the people and the country,” he said as reported by New Sarawak Tribune.

Lembang said it also reflected a strong political will by the prime minister, that he was able to sit together with the opposition leaders to get their opinion of great importance to the country.

In a joint statement issued after the meeting with the PH leaders, the prime minister said apart from good governance, they had also agreed on the importance of an independent judiciary and institutional reforms.

With the ‘pact’, Ismail would indirectly earn himself a safe passage should any of the MPs, who were on his side, decided to withdraw their support when a motion of confidence is tabled in coming parliament sitting.

In fact, opposition leader and PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had more or less given his promise of a “smooth sailing” process for the confidence vote.

“If the (political) atmosphere remains like this, and pro-rakyat programmes can be delivered, we will not complicate matters”, Anwar was quoted by a news portal when asked his stand on the confidence vote soon after he signed the agreement with the prime minister.

Meanwhile, former federal territories minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa twitted the result of the meeting was a “great news” for all Malaysians.

“This will help reinforce the ‘Keluarga Malaysia’ concept… a start in the right direction for Malaysia,” he said.