No State election until February 2022, unless Emergency revoked earlier

Statement by the Prime Minister's Office.

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KUCHING, July 31: There will be no State election until February, 2022 unless the localised Emergency Order for Sarawak is lifted earlier.

Prime Minister Office (PMO), in a statement today, said the Proclamation of Emergency was declared across Sarawak on grounds to prevent a Covid-19 widespread due to the Sarawak State Election where gatherings are inevitable.

“The Proclamation of Emergency for the entire State of Sarawak needs to be implemented to postpone the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly (DUN) elections to avoid a more serious Covid-19 spread.

“With the Proclamation of Emergency, Sarawak State Election will be not held within this period of emergency unless the emergency is terminated earlier,” PMO said.

PMO added the decision was made following a discussion between Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and the Sarawak government.

A Federal Gazette dated July 30 on the announcement of Sarawak’s emergency status was revealed this morning.

The Sarawak DUN was supposed to be dissolved on June 7 after coming to the end of its term and an election is required to be held within 60 days, but a state of emergency covering Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak and Sabah was declared from Jan 12 to Aug 1, thus suspending the polls.

Now that the Emergency is nearing its end and elections must be held by September, the King and Prime Minister have expressed concerns if allowing the State polls to take place would worsen the current Covid-19 situation.

Meanwhile, a separate law was also published in the Federal Gazette to give power to the incumbent Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS)-led State government to continue functioning.

The Emergency (Essential Powers) (Sarawak) Ordinance 2021 states that for as long as the Sarawak emergency is in force, the dissolution of the state assembly shall have no effect.

It added that the Sarawak Election will only need to be called within 60 days after the latest emergency is revoked or annulled.

The ordinance also requires the Agong to consult the Sarawak governor on the emergency which can be terminated before the expiration.— DayakDaily