Stable ringgit, higher oil price and completion of redelineation will motivate the PM to dissolve parliament, says a political observer

KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Najib Razak will wait for the perfect time before announcing the date of the 14th general election, said Universiti Malaya academic Prof Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi.

According to the senior political observer, the perfect time will be when the value of ringgit is at RM3.5 against the greenback and when the oil price reaches closer to US$70 per barrel.

“My interpretation is that for the prime minister to announce the date of the general election is when the ringgit is stable. Maybe when it hits RM3.5 against the dollar.

“As well as when the oil price is US$60 to US$70 a barrel. That is a very good indicator for the government to tell the people that the economy is stable and the people need to keep the government in power,” he opined.

He was responding recent BN’s supreme council meeting where the ruling coalition had discussed their preparations for the general election which many speculate would be held right after the Chinese New Year.

Following the BN meeting, Umno vice-president Hishammuddin Hussein said the meeting went smoothly but added that details on allocation of seats to the BN component parties would be determined later.

“No dates of the general election were discussed. It was generally on preparations (for the polls). We will discuss again, we still have time,” said the Defence Minister.

MCA president Liow Tiong Lai, who is Transport Minister, said the list of candidates for all component parties had been handed over to Najib and it was up to him to decide.

He said the BN component parties were united, more cohesive and well prepared to face the election.

Awang added that the ongoing redelineation process – back on track now after being delayed by the legal suit filed against the Election Commission by the Selangor government – was another factor to be considered on the GE date.

Awang predicted that Najib will be calling for a special parliamentary sitting in late January or early February to table the motion for parliament’s approval for the new seats.

“They did not announce the election date at the BN meeting because the leadership wanted to make sure all aspects are in check.

“For instance on the new voters registration list, and on when the redelineation process is completed. Najib will have to call for a special parliamentary session to get the parliament’s approval,” the academic added.