In a televised address on Tuesday, Muhyiddin said the parliament will be suspended for a stipulated period of time and that elections would not be held in the Southeast Asian nation during the emergency, which could last until August 1.
Also, during this period, Muhyiddin said Federal executive powers will cover all matters concerning state legislative powers, except for Islamic laws and Malay customs, native laws and customs in Sabah and Sarawak, religion, citizenship as well as language, as prescribed under Clause 6A Article 150 of the Federal Constitution.
"It's very clearly a political move from the Muhyiddin side to preempt political challenges from both his rivals in his ruling coalition as well as the opposition", he said.
An election in the state of Sabah previous year has been blamed for triggering a new wave of infections that spread nationwide.
"The general elections will take place as soon as the Independent Committee certifies that the Covid-19 virus has subsided", he said.
Under emergency rule, his government can introduce laws without parliamentary approval. Muhyiddin said yesterday, when announcing a two-week Movement Control Order on six states from January 13 to 26, that the public health care system was at a "breaking point", with more than 2,000 new Covid-19 cases recorded daily over the past seven days.
Malaysia's virus cases have spiralled from just over 15,000 three months ago to 1,38,224, including 555 deaths.
Malaysia's benchmark share index fell as much as 1.6% after the emergency announcement. The emergency could be lifted earlier if the rate of infection slows, the palace statement added.
Earlier today, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, declared a state of emergency to curb the spread of Covid-19.
Muhyiddin first tried to persuade the king to declare an emergency in October but was rebuffed.
Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy in which the king has a largely ceremonial role, carrying his duties with advice from the prime minister and cabinet.
Al-Sultan Abdullah also advised the people to remain calm, resilient and resilient in the face of the implementation of this emergency and the Movement Control Order (MCO) for security and common interests.
The government needs to be accorded the necessary powers to ensure that the pandemic can be curbed, he said, adding that the King was satisfied with the need to declare an emergency.