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07 April 2018, 12:17 | Floyd Cook
Malaysian PM Najib Razak announces dissolution of parliament for election
The 64-year-old leader is expected to retain power due to a rift in opposition ranks between Mahathir's bloc and the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party.
Prime MinisterNajib Razak announces the dissolution of parliament as he addresses the nation during a live telecast in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on April 6, 2018.
"I would like to inform the people that I met the king [Muhammad V of Kelantan] and sought his permission for Parliament to be dissolved on Saturday", Najib said on state television, Channel NewsAsia reported.
The Election Commission is expected to meet within a week to set a polling date and determine when formal campaigning can begin.
The government has indeed implemented an inclusive and comprehensive transformation which has yielded at least seven successes for the people and country since 2009, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
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.
Najib's United Malay National Organisation party has led every BN coalition since Malaysia gained independence from British rule in 1957.
The leader and fund deny any wrongdoing.
In recent days, parliament approved plans to redraw electoral boundaries and passed a contentious anti-fake news bill, changes critics say will favour Najib. It is expected to fall in early May, just short of the official end of the government's five year term on June 24.
Najib has clung on to power despite being embroiled in a corruption scandal that involved hundreds of millions of dollars passing through his bank accounts believed linked to the 1MDB state fund. Normally, the elections for 222-member House of Representatives are held within two months after the dissolution of the parliament.
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