With Emergency Rule, limited parliament sessions and weak legitimacy, Covid-19 is seen as undermining democracy in Malaysia. In this seminar Dr Welsh argues that there are also opposite trends. While acknowledging the contraction of democratic space and adoption of more authoritarian practices, Welsh argues that Covid-19 is leaving a profound impact on political norms and behaviour. Not only are more people politically engaged, new forms of mobilization and generational shifts are taking place. Covid-19 may in fact leave Malaysia stronger to address the serious inequalities and policy and governance challenges exposed by Covid-19.
Malaysia is set to end its state of emergency despite reporting record high coronavirus cases for weeks. Earlier this week, Malaysia’s King made a rare rebuke of the country’s prime minister, arguing he didn’t give consent for emergency laws to be revoked. It’s led to speculation of a constitutional crisis. Dr. Bridget Welsh from the University of Nottingham.
Malaysia is not alone in grappling with a debilitating pandemic. Yet what makes this crisis different is how it is playing out politically.