Anwar Ibrahim is our new Prime Minister. Now begins the arduous task of forming a cabinet from among the pull-and-shove political groups who are lending their support to him.
Anwar has the onerous task of accommodating the demands of the political coalitions in the ‘unity government’ – while ensuring that the cabinet is made up of individuals of calibre, not deadwood.
Once the taxing task of forming a credible cabinet is done, the next stop will be 19 December, when Parliament is scheduled to reconvene.
In the spirit of true democratic principles, Anwar has announced he will seek a vote of confidence on the floor of the house – a motion that the back-door Mahiaddin Yasin-led and Ismail Sabri Yaakob-led governments did not have the courage to table.
With the numbers pledged to Anwar’s government, there is little doubt his motion will succeed – unless some devil’s advocate moves the pawns to checkmate the king!
- Sign up for Aliran's free daily email updates or weekly newsletters or both
- Make a one-off donation to Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara, CIMB a/c 8004240948
- Make a pledge or schedule an auto donation to Aliran every month or every quarter
- Become an Aliran member
Next, Anwar will have to table the 2023 Budget. The challenges are well- defined – especially the rising cost of living and low wages, affecting low and middle-income wage earners and those entrapped in the informal sector.
Once past the initial minefield, he will have to come up with policies in line with Pakatan Harapan’s manifesto.
If he does not have to contend with obnoxious ploys like the ‘Sheraton move’, Anwar will have the comfort of a full term to implement a wide range of transformative measures – though that is easier said than done.
His administration will obviously be plagued by the race-and-religious based opposition bloc dominated by Pas. As the formal opposition, its representatives are likely to throw a spanner in the works at every turn to thwart a progressive transformation of the status quo.
Faced with such swirling sands, Anwar’s government will be roundly tested. A fleeting five years in government cannot, by any means, be enough to dismantle the ingrained decades-old quid-pro-quo political culture.
But the hope is that Anwar’s administration will strive to bring about realistic changes to the entrenched socioeconomic and political ecosystem.