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Malaysia PM Muhyiddin plans to resign: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Malaysia Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin

Malaysia's embattled Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has decided to tender his resignation to the monarch after losing his majority in Parliament.

Muhyiddin will give notice to the king on Monday, saying that he will no longer continue his work as the premier, news portal MalaysiaKini reported on Sunday, citing a cabinet minister.

"Tomorrow, there will be a special cabinet meeting. After that, he will head to (the palace) to submit his resignation," Mohd Redzuan told Malaysiakini.

Muhyiddin, who came to power last year after former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad unexpectedly resigned, had led the government with a slim majority in the 222-seat parliament.

However, a group of lawmakers from the United Malays National Organization (UMNO) party - the largest bloc in the ruling coalition - recently withdrew their support for him, diminishing his chances to remain in power.

Muhyiddin has been blamed for taking detrimental measures that have worsened the situation after the coronavirus outbreak in the country, resulting in a surge of COVID-19 infections and an economic downturn from multiple lockdowns.

He faced calls to resign after the king issued a rare rebuke of the government’s decision to revoke COVID-19 emergency laws, in place since January, without his consent.

King Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad said he had demanded that the revocation of Malaysia’s seven-month emergency laws be deliberated in parliament. However, the government did not comply.

The PM’s office said the government's decision had been in accordance with the laws and the constitution of Malaysia.

Following the king’s rare rebuke, some allies accused Muhyiddin of treason, while opposition lawmakers urged him to step down for disrespecting the king. 

The premier had for weeks defied the growing calls for his resignation, and instead made efforts to garner the support of a few lawmakers to retain his majority in parliament.

Then for the first time on Friday, Muhyiddin admitted that he did not have a majority in Parliament.

Muhyiddin’s last-ditch effort to woo the opposition lawmakers by promising political and electoral reforms in exchange for support on a confidence vote in September also failed and his offer was unanimously rejected.

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