The prime minister of Malaysia and his entire cabinet have officially submitted their resignations to the king, according to a statement from the palace.
While Malaysia deals with its worst COVID outbreak and the economic devastation caused by multiple rounds of lockdowns, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and his cabinet have resigned.
Yassin is the second prime minister to resign in two years. In February of 2020, Malaysia’s former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamed suddenly resigned, which gave Yassin the opportunity to form a government after uniting a fragile coalition.
According to the palace’s statement, Yassin will be staying on as a “caretaker” in the prime minister position until a new leader can be found and appointed, as the king does not think that an election is “the best option” at the moment because of the pandemic.
Even before Yassin and the cabinet resigned, local media had already been reporting rumors of the prime minister’s impending resignation, citing the fact that he had lost majority support in parliament because of infighting within his political coalition.
Yassin confirmed these rumors in his televised address, stating that his decision to leave was based on losing majority support in parliament. The prime minister also stated that he will not work with “kleptocrats” and will not interfere with the country’s judiciary process in order to remain in power.
He also said that he hopes a new government will be formed soon to help ensure that Malaysia’s economy recovers and its vaccine rollout continues smoothly. Yassin’s cabinet had already ordered approximately 87 million COVID shots, which he believes will be “enough” to vaccinate the country’s population by the end of October.
“Malaysia’s daily new Covid cases per million people is one of the highest globally, according to data compiled by online repository Our World in Data.
On a seven-day moving average basis, the Southeast Asian country recorded 620.14 confirmed Covid cases per million people on Saturday — the sixth highest globally and the top in Asia, the data showed.
But authorities have accelerated the pace of vaccinations in recent weeks despite the political tussle. Nearly one-third of Malaysia’s 32 million people has completed their vaccinations as of Sunday, official data showed…
The health ministry projected that daily infections would remain high and reach a peak in mid-September, before falling to around 1,000 cases per day in October.”