The prime minister said that he will leave it to UMNO’s top five to determine the best date to hold the next general election.
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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri did not rule out the possibility of holding the 15th general election this year.
According to the UMNO vice-president, this will be decided by UMNO’s top five, reported The Star.
“Yes, but it all depends on the top 5,” the Bera MP was quoted as saying.
He was responding to questions from reporters on the possibility of GE15 being held this year.
Despite not elaborating further on the matter, Ismail said that the UMNO leadership will hold a meeting to discuss the issue “as soon as possible”.
Free Malaysia Today reported that the meeting could take place before the tabling of Budget 2023 next month.
Ismail had earlier launched the World Congress on Innovation and Technology 2022 (WCIT 2022) held at Setia SPICE Convention Centre here in Bayan Lepas today.
UMNO top five referred to the party’s echelons including its president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, and its three vice-presidents.
Apart from Ismail himself, the other UMNO veeps are Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin and Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid.
Ismail also remained coy when asked whether he will table Budget 2023 himself this coming 7 October.
“Wait and see,” said Ismail.
UMNO leadership – including Zahid and Mohamad – had repeatedly pushed for GE15 to be held as soon as possible, based on Barisan Nasional’s strong performance in the recent state elections.
The 2018 general election term is only scheduled to end in July 2023.
Pakatan Harapan and PAS had previously announced that the state assemblies in their respective control will run full-term and will not be dissolved earlier should the prime minister decide to dissolve the Parliament earlier to pave way for an early general election.