Malaysian PM Razak dissolves parliament ahead of vote

Malaysian PM Dissolves Parliament, Two Months Before Term Ends

Malaysian PM Najib Razak announces dissolution of parliament for election

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak on Friday announced to dissolve the parliament on Saturday, paving way for general election to be held within days.

"His Majesty (the Agong) has agreed to the dissolution of the Parliament from tomorrow, Saturday, April 7, 2018", local media reported, citing, Najib Razak as saying, in a special speech broadcast live on public television channels, and attended by cabinet members on Friday.

Pandikar said the next matter would be in the hands of the Election Commission (EC) to conduct the general election process.

Mr Najib's announcement comes on the back of robust growth for Malaysia, buoyed by a recovery in global crude oil prices and increased trade and infrastructure investment from Malaysia's largest trading partner, China.

But his government stoked criticism last week by pushing a controversial redrawing of the electoral map through parliament which critics say will tilt the poll in Najib's favour.

A general election was widely expected to be called a year ago, but Mr Najib held off, apparently to allow time for the introduction of budgetary reforms aimed at lower-income families and rural voters, who make up a key voting bloc for his ruling BN coalition.

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He said the Barisan Nasional coalition headed by his United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) party needed a strong new mandate to allow it to proceed with a more extensive transformation of the country.

The opposition alliance is trying to erode the coalition's support base by focusing on the allegation that Najib improperly received money from a sovereign wealth fund.

It now holds 132 out of 222 parliamentary seats.

The leader and fund deny any wrongdoing.

Najib's five-year term officially ends on June 24, but the prime minister can dissolve parliament anytime before the end of his term with the king's assent and call an election.

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