The simple fact is that a snap election won’t stop the political impasse because Umno and PAS can’t win 112 seats out of 165 seats in West Malaysia.

— Wong Chin Huat, political scientist

As Parliament convenes on July 13, we can expect a flurry of movements on both sides of the divide.

This sitting could spring some surprises but what is not surprising is that three motions have been received by the Speaker and they are all expected to be tabled, either for debate or a vote to decide the outcome.

The first is the motion of confidence in Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin. I expect this to sail through. As it stands today, the government bloc has the majority, albeit a super thin one.

I do not expect the Perikatan Nasional (PN) Members of Parliament, as almost all of them should now be contented and happy after being given a “second salary” job, to betray the prime minister in Parliament come
July 13.

Should anything to the contrary take place, then we can surmise that those who have had their rewards are really an ungrateful lot. Then again, this is politics — expect all the possible(s) as well as the impossible(s).

Ironically, there is also a motion of no confidence in Muyhiddin which was submitted by former PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

When it was first proposed three months ago, Muhyiddin has reasons to be worried.

At that time, PN has a wafer-thin three-seat majority and with the ongoing attempts at enticing crossovers of MPs from both sides, anything could happen.

Understandably, both sides have reasons to feel jittery. We have witnessed how some MPs have treated their positions as musical chairs, with personal conscience and party loyalty and alignment conveniently chucked aside.

However, with the latest upheavals in Pakatan Harapan (PH), particularly the impasse over the prime ministerial candidate, I do not expect Muhyiddin to lose the vote. He should be able to keep his post, at least for now.

Herein lies yet another major let-down for PH supporters. Their euphoria over the historic GE14 victory in May 2018 was short-lived.

Six months into the PH administration of Dr Mahathir, we started to see cracks appearing within the coalition.

The second-time prime minister started making unilateral decisions with some of his inexperienced cabinet ministers groping in the dark.

Some were perceived as arrogant, acting high and mighty as if like a messiah, expecting the people to prostrate before them upon their arrival at an event.

Four months ago came the infamous Sheraton putsch. Pakatan Harapan was caught napping. In retrospect, I think they deserved to be outmanoeuvred. Yeah, keep on quarrelling and politicking among yourselves, boys and girls. You deserve what you get!

More than four months later and having to face a full Parliament sitting for the first time after the Sheraton putsch within a week from today, it seems that PH leaders are still not able to put their house in order.

We have heard so many proposals/versions from within the coalition — a PM for six months, a minister mentor’s post, a PM candidate from Sabah, a written agreement to bind Dr Mahathir to his word, and more meetings to be held.

What is quite clear for all to see is that while DAP and Amanah are ready to accept Anwar Ibrahim as prime ministerial candidate, Dr Mahathir’s group and Parti Warisan Sabah are reluctant.

If PH Plus is unable to put its own house in order, I do not foresee the coalition’s ability to bring down Muhyiddin and the PN government in the august House on July 13. Another interesting motion slated for July 13 is one calling for the removal of Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof and his deputy Nga Kor Ming.

This was submitted by the prime minister himself.

As expected, PH leaders and several civil society groups, including Bersih 2.0, have urged MPs to vote against the motion.

It would be unfair for me to comment on this matter as I do not know Ariff personally nor able to judge his performance as speaker over the past two years.

The Second Meeting of the Fourteenth Parliament 2020 will sit for 25 days from July 13 to August 27.

As I used to drop by Parliament in the past, I also hope to attend some of its sittings in the later part of August. For all we know, the prime minister could just dissolve Parliament and call for fresh elections after Aug 27.

If it happens, it will not be a surprise.

The views expressed here are those of the columnist and do not necessarily represent the views of New Sarawak Tribune.

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