KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin says he is still the country's legitimate leader and his Perikatan Nasional (PN) government remains in power, until opposition chief Anwar Ibrahim has proven through constitutional means his claim of majority support from federal lawmakers.
Tan Sri Muhyiddin issued the statement in response to claims earlier on Wednesday (Sept 23) by Datuk Seri Anwar that he has secured majority support from MPs and that the PN government has fallen.
"I take note of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's statement claiming he has majority support from Members of Parliament to form the government.
"The claim must be proven through the process and methods determined by the Federal Constitution.
"Without this process, the statement by Datuk Seri Anwar is only a claim.
"Until proven otherwise, the Perikatan Nasional government is still intact and I am the legitimate Prime Minister," the statement said.
He called on Malaysians to be calm and said the issue will be handled carefully using the law and the federal Constitution.
In a separate statement, the coalitions and parties that back the PN administration said the government has remained intact, and rejected the claim that some lawmakers had jumped to support Mr Anwar.
The factions consisting of 12 political parties will continue their "solid backing" of Mr Muhyiddin, PN said in a statement issued by its secretary-general Annuar Musa.
"The alliance of parties that forms the PN government rejects the claim by PKR (Parti Keadilan Rakyat) president Anwar Ibrahim that alleges he has majority support to form the government.
"His statement is no more than a repeat of cheap publicity that has been carried out many times before this," the statement said.
It added: "His new action has exposed his greed and power-hungry attitude that totally ignores political stability and the country’s economy, and the fate of the people, who has been severely affected by Covid-19."
PN took over the government following the late-February collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government, led by then Premier Mahathir Mohamad, after just 22 months in power.
The collapse was caused by the defections of some 40 MPs from Pakatan Harapan, and led to rise of Mr Muhyiddin as Malaysia’s eighth prime minister.
PN is formally and informally backed by Umno, which heads the Barisan Nasional coalition, Mr Muhyiddin’s Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, Parti Islam SeMalaysia, the Gabungan Parti Sarawak coalition and two small parties from Sabah.
When Parliament sat on July 13, PN had 113 lawmakers on its side, in the 22-strong House.
Pakatan Harapan drew support from a total of 109 MPs, including from its allies in Sabah.