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Saturday, July 31, 2021

Emergency extended for Sarawak until February

 

The Sarawak state assembly is expected to remain suspended until Feb 2, 2022. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Sarawak will remain under a state of emergency until Feb 2, 2022.

This was revealed in a federal gazette which was released last night, in which the government said they are extending the emergency on grounds “to prevent any further increase in the spread of the epidemic of Covid-19 if the state election is held”.

The current emergency, covering peninsula and East Malaysia, will end tomorrow.

“A state election is required to be held within 60 days from Aug 2 in accordance with Clause (4) of Article 21 of Sarawak state constitution,” the gazette said.

The state election was supposed to be held by June 6 but suspended due to the emergency. Chief minister Abang Johari Openg previously said the state election can wait until the Covid-19 situation improved.

On June 6, Sarawak state assembly speaker Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar issued a statement stating that the state legislative assembly will not be dissolved but shall continue its term until Aug 1, 2021, which is the end of the current nationwide emergency.

Law minister Takiyuddin Hassan announced in the Dewan Rakyat on July 26 that the Perikatan Nasional-led (PN) government would not seek an extension on the current emergency proclamation beyond Aug 1.

Three by-elections – two parliamentary seats and one state seat – have also been postponed since late last year, after the government declared an emergency in the respective areas.

On Nov 18, Batu Sapi in Sabah was placed under a state emergency to avoid a by-election from taking place following the death of its MP Liew Vui Keong from Warisan, who was the law minister under the former Pakatan Harapan administration.

On Dec 16, a proclamation of Emergency was announced for the Gerik parliamentary constituency in Perak and the Bugaya state constituency in Sabah, following the deaths of the elected representatives. - FMT

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