As the ultimate legislative body in Malaysia, the Parliament is responsible for passing, amending and repealing acts of law. It is subordinate to the Head of State, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, under Article 39 of the Constitution.
The Dewan Rakyat consists of 222 members of Parliament (MPs) elected from single-member constituencies drawn based on population in a general election using the first-past-the-postsystem. A general election is held every five years or when Parliament is dissolved by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the advice of the Prime Minister. Suffrage is given to registered voters 21 years and above, however voting is not compulsory. The age requirement to stand for election is 21 years and above. When a member of Parliament dies, resigns or become disqualified to hold a seat, a by-election is held in his constituency unless the tenure for the current Parliament is less than two years, where the seat is simply left vacant until the next general election.
Parliament functions as the legislative chambers of the Federation. In general, Parliament enacts and amends laws, controls the use of the country’s finances, monitors how the Federal Government governs the country and discusses national issues.
MPs and senators take an oath to discharge their duty to the best of their ability, that they will bear true faith and allegiance to Malaysia and preserve, protect and defend the Federal Constitution. MPs therefore have a duty to the people who voted them, the country as well as the Constitution.
Is the legislative branch of the state governments of each of the 13 Malaysian states. Members of a state legislative assembly comprises elected representatives from single-member constituencies during state elections through the first-past-the-postsystem.
The assemblies have powers to enact state laws as provided for by the Constitution of Malaysia. The majority party in each assembly forms the state government, and the leader of the majority party becomes menteri besar (for states with hereditary rulers) or chief minister (for states without hereditary rulers) of the state.