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Malaysian elections lead to first hung parliament in history

 UPI News logo: MainLogo UPI News 11/21/2022 Clyde Hughes
Malaysian opposition leader chairman Anwar Ibrahim (C) with senior leaders in Pakatan Harapan (The Alliance of Hope) react during a press conference after the 15th General Election in Subang, Malaysia, on Sunday. Photo by Fazry Ismail/EPA-EFE © Fazry Ismail/EPA-EFE Malaysian opposition leader chairman Anwar Ibrahim (C) with senior leaders in Pakatan Harapan (The Alliance of Hope) react during a press conference after the 15th General Election in Subang, Malaysia, on Sunday. Photo by Fazry Ismail/EPA-EFE

Nov. 21 (UPI) -- Nationwide elections in Malaysia on Sunday, meant to end political gridlock, caused more as none of the country's major parties earned enough votes to form a new government.

The result was the first hung parliament in Malaysia's political history as voters roundly rejected the ruling Barisan National coalition of current Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, which grabbed just 30 of the open 220 seats.

The coalition included the once-powerful United Malays National Organization party, which had been in power for decades.

Veteran Malaysian legislator and former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad lost his seat after 53 years in office. He had been best known for Malaysia's economic transformation in the 1980s.

With all but one parliamentary seat accounted for, the multi-ethnic Pakatan Harapan coalition, led by veteran opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, won 82 seats. The Perikatan Nasional party, led by former Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, captured 73 seats.

Perikatan Nasional, or National Alliance, has the support of an Islamic party that is calling for the institution of shariah, or Islamic law, in the country.

"I am confident I will obtain enough support from lawmakers that will enable me to be appointed by the king as prime minister," Muhyiddin said after the election.

As the next step, rival parties must present the name of a candidate they think has majority support in the lower house of parliament.

On Monday, the Barisan National coalition's Supreme Council could not reach a decision on which coalition it would support to form the next federal government.

The coalition's president Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong said at UMNO's headquarters that negotiations with the leading parties will continue on Tuesday.

"No decision was made at today's supreme council meeting," Wee said.

 

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