WhatsApp Channel Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now

Anwar, a longtime reformist leader, was sworn in as Malaysia’s prime minister

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar inaugurates Prime Minister (24 November 2022)
Malaysian opposition leader Anwar inaugurates Prime Minister (24 November 2022)

Anwar Ibrahim, a longtime opposition leader, was sworn in as Malaysia’s prime minister on Thursday, giving political reformers a victory. Malaysia held a divisive general election a few days ago, leading to a hanging parliament.

Anwar was sworn in at a simple ceremony at the National Palace, which was broadcast live on national television.

Malaysia’s King Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah has appointed Anwar, 75, as Malaysia’s 10th prime minister. He previously said Anwar was likely to have a majority of support and expressed satisfaction.

Anwar later tweeted, “I will humbly and responsibly perform the duties entrusted to me.”

Anwar’s Pakatan Harapan won 82 seats in Saturday’s election, but less than the 112 needed by the majority. Former Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin‘s right-wing National Alliance won 73 seats, and the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party won 49, making it the largest single party.

The long-running ruling coalition led by the Malay National Unity Agency agreed to support Anwar’s unity government, resolving the impasse. This was once inconceivable in Malaysia’s bipartisan rivalry, long-dominated politics. Other influential groups said they would defer to the king’s decision.

In a statement, the palace said, “His Royal Highness reminds all parties that the winners do not all win and the losers do not all lose.” The royal family urged Anwar and his new government to be humble, saying all opposition parties should reconcile, ensure government stability and stop political turmoil in Malaysia. Malaysia has already seen three prime ministers after the 2018 elections.

MUST READ: ☞  U.S. General Warns: China Is the Biggest Threat in Space

The statement did not provide details of the composition of the government. Malaysia’s stock market and currency have since soared.

Muhidin, 75, refused to admit defeat. At a news conference, he asked Anwar to prove that he had the support of a majority of lawmakers.

Social media posts warned that if Anwar’s multi-ethnic camp won, racial trouble could arise. Police have intensified law and order throughout the country. Anwar’s party urged supporters to refrain from holding celebratory rallies or making sensitive remarks to avoid provocations.

Anwar’s inauguration as prime minister is the culmination of his tumultuous political career that will ease fears of Islamization. But he faces the heavy task of quelling ethnic divisions that have deepened after Saturday’s election and reviving an economy with high inflation and a devalued currency. Malays make up two-thirds of Malaysia’s population of 33 million, with ethnic minorities such as ethnic Chinese and Indians remaining in ethnic groups.

Bridget Welsh, an expert on Southeast Asian politics at the University of Nottingham’s Institute of Asian Studies in Malaysia, said: “He will have to compromise with other government actors, which means that the reform process will be more inclusive,” and “Anwar is a globalist who will appease international investors.” He used to be a bridge between communities that would test his leadership while providing comfort to the challenges facing Malaysia.

Anwar, a former deputy prime minister, was ousted from prison in the 1990s, leading to massive street protests and a reform movement that became a major political force. Thursday was his second victory for the reformist camp, the first being the 2018 election that led to Malaysia’s first regime change since independence from Britain in 1957.

MUST READ: ☞  Vietnam is seeking to purchase a variety of military equipment from the United States, including to improve its surveillance capabilities in the South China Sea

Anwar faced sodomy charges at the time, which he said were politically motivated. He was pardoned and was scheduled to succeed Prime Minister Mahathir. But Muhiddin betrayed him and formed a new government with the Malaysian Unification Body, leading to the collapse of the Anwar government. Muhiddin ‘s government was infighting, and he resigned after 17 months. Ismail Sabri Yaakob, the leader of Malaysia’s unification body, was chosen by the king as prime minister.

Many rural Malays fear they may lose their privileges under the greater pluralism led by Anwar. Many chose Muhiddin’s camp in Saturday’s vote because they were fed up with corruption and infighting in Malaysia’s unification body.

(This article is based on an Associated Press report.)

Leave a Comment

WhatsApp Channel Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now