The 2018 General Election in Malaysia made history as it unfolded on Wednesday as the nation underwent its first transition of power since it achieved independence, six decades ago.
92-year-old Mahathir, who helped establish the ruling Barisan National (BN) coalition in power and served as Malaysia’s longest-serving Prime Minister, stepped out of retirement and left the ruling party to lead the opposition. Breaking the BN’s six-decade long monopoly, Mahathir beat his one-time protégé Najib Razak and is set to become the world’s oldest head of government when he is sworn in.
The stunning election upset dislodged the BN from its spot in the list of the world’s longest serving ruling parties still in power. Interestingly, Singapore’s People’s Action Party (PAP) takes BN’s spot and climbed to the third place in the list.
Like the BN previously, PAP has remained in power since Singapore attained independence and has been the ruling party here for the past 59 years. The party has been overwhelmingly dominant in local politics since it came into power in 1959 and presently holds 82 out of 101 seats in Parliament.
The number one spot in the list of the world’s longest serving ruling parties still in power is taken by the Workers’ Party of Korea, which has been in power in North Korea since 1948. Incidentally, North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un is set to visit Singapore next month – in what will be his farthest trip outside his isolated nation – for his highly-anticipated summit with US President Donald Trump on 12 June.
The second place on the list is taken by the Communist Party of China, which has ruled China since 1949. Singapore’s PAP comes after the Chinese ruling party and is followed by the Cameroonian People’s Democratic Party in fourth place and the Communist Party of Cuba in fifth place.
The Cameroonian People’s Democratic Party has been in power since 1960 while the Communist Party of Cuba ruled the Republic of Cuba since 1965, although other parties exist without legal recognition or incorporation.