Malaysian PM dissolves parliament, tough election expected

Najib Razak’s five-year term as prime minister officially ends on June 24

Najib Razak’s five-year term as prime minister officially ends on June 24

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.

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

Prime Minister Najib Razak announces the dissolution of parliament as he addresses the nation during a live telecast in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on April 6, 2018.

While announcing the dissolution of Parliament, Najib took the opportunity to remind the people of all that the government has done under his administration for the past nine years.

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"If victory is given to BN, we promise to do our best, to carry out a bigger, more inclusive and more comprehensive transformation of the country", Mr Najib said.

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.

The polls are seen as a test of survival for Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is widely expected to win but under pressure to improve the performance of his National Front coalition after support eroded in the last two elections. Voting must be held within 60 days.

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Najib, whose five-year term ends in June, has been accused of gerrymandering and suppressing free speech during the contentious campaign.

The leader and fund deny any wrongdoing.

The Prime Minister also advised the heads of all the state governments to seek the consent of the Sultans and Yang Dipertuas Negeri to have their respective state assemblies dissolved so that the elections can be conducted simultaneously, except in the case of Sarawak, which had held the state election on May 7, 2016.

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