KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 21 — The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) is urging the new government to work immediately to resolve the twin pandemic and economic crises that the nation is currently facing.
In a statement today, chief executive officer Tricia Yeoh said she hoped the new government under Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s administration to carry on key initiatives that have already been in place, including the National Recovery Plan and National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme.
She said utmost priority must be given to address the public healthcare system due to the spike of COVID-19 cases across the nation.
“While it is positive that the political impasse has now ended, IDEAS cautions that the political position that the current coalition is in is relatively unstable.
“Given that the new prime minister has a slim majority, the prime minister must now work to instil confidence in his new administration in order to secure broad support,” she said.
Yeoh said the government should commit to the slate of institutional reforms that have been laid out by the preceding prime minister.
She said this included the proposed two-term limit of a prime minister, immediate implementation of voting age to 18, equal constituency development funds to all members of parliament, parliamentary reforms, an increase of COVID-19 funds to RM65 billion and opposition representation within Parliamentary Select Committees for joint review and being provided with additional oversight roles.
“Malaysia has lost valuable time and robust economic recovery will involve strong political will in introducing measures to improve our regional and international competitiveness, productivity and innovation.
“We must adopt a whole-of-society approach in reigniting Malaysia’s economic value through engagement with think tanks, civil society, professional networks and international bodies,” she said.
She added that institutional reforms would also contribute to creating investor confidence.