Just as the explosive numbers of the COVID-19 cases in Malaysia took over all the news platforms, a political turmoil that was happening before it all started, and suddenly it slipped out of our minds.
In less than a week, the politics in Malaysia had taken the biggest turn. The government that the nation rooted to bring change to the previously corrupt one, which was failing to fulfill their promises had collapsed. Birthing a new government—one that consisted of leaders from the party the nation fought to remove from power.
It all started on one Monday in February when Tun Dr. Mahatir Mohammad shocked the nation by announcing his resignation. This followed after disagreements between him and Anwar Ibrahim had reportedly risen over Mahatir’s reluctance to hand over power as Prime Minister to Anwar. This had been agreed by all parties before Pakatan Harapan won the general election in May 2018.
It was seen as a historic turning point – an election that overturned a party which had been in power for more than 60 years.
But less than two years later, the new government is out, and the old ruling party is back in power. So why did a coalition whose victory had ignited such hopes for change in Malaysia collapse so quickly?
– As quoted by BBC
A once democratic country had become politically cloudy when the King had announced the 8th Prime Minister of Malaysia as Mr. Muhyiddin Yassin along with the introduction of a brand new government—Perikatan Nasional (national alliance). However, it is not to say the government is brand new as it comprises of many familiar faces. United Malays National Organization (UMNO), being the biggest component alongside the PAS political party and Bersatu political party.
Initially, the cabinet seating was scheduled to be in March but it has been pushed to mid-May. Amidst the Covid-19 issues ongoing in Malaysia and with the sudden change in the economy, sources like The Economist say that this new ruling coalition is maybe even more unstable than the one it had ousted.
To bolster the nation’s trust and confidence in this new government, attempting racial diversity and fulfilling the needs of the nation would be their best bet. As there is no manifesto, only time can tell what the nation is to expect of the new government. Fingers crossed, only the best.