Hishammuddin Hussein himself said he was hoping to form a new government with Pakatan Harapan components PKR and Bersatu, Anwar Ibrahim said today.
Anwar said this when asked who had given Pakatan Harapan (PH) the information that the Umno man and his cohorts were negotiating to cut in and edge out DAP and Amanah.
“I asked Sembrong,” he said briefly in the Parliament lobby.
Hishammuddin is the Sembrong MP
“He should deny or confirm this. If he denied, good,” Anwar told reporters during before heading off for lunch.
Hishammuddin has ridiculed the accusations, which included his advocacy of race-based politics in his recently published articles in the newspapers.
Speaking to reporters at the Parliament lobby this morning, he said there was no such content in his writing.
“Where did I write that we want to sideline DAP and Amanah?
“Where I spoke about racial politics? I spoke about unity. So, either they didn’t read my writing or purposely ignored it.”
Asked if he viewed PH to be a strong government, Hishammuddin said there were signs that things are not well for the ruling pact, but it was no use for them to attack him.
“If they are strong, why will they be targeting Sembrong of all people?” he said, referring to himself by his constituency.
“This is a sign that things are not well for them. They have to put their house in order.
“We will not allow Barisan Nasional, Umno or Sembrong to become a scapegoat for their internal issues.”
“They should focus on administering the country,” he added.
Hishammuddin also said Anwar’s remarks about him in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday were nothing new as the latter had mentioned to him, in private, that he was blocking the PKR president from becoming the next prime minister.
“But who am I (to block him)? I don’t have any positions in Umno…this makes no sense. Secondly, we are an opposition party. What do we have to do with the PM’s position?
“Unless Anwar feels, in order to become PM, he needs our support. If he needs our support, then I wish to ask him if he is confident about getting support from his own party?” Hishammuddin added.
On a sarcastic note, the former Umno vice-president also thanked Anwar for showing that he is still relevant in politics.
Asked why he was targeted, Hishammuddin said: “I don’t know. You have to ask him (Anwar). It is baffling…he doesn’t need our support if he has the backing of his own MPs. So, you figure that one out.”
Quizzed if he supported Anwar as the next prime minister, Hishammuddin sidestepped the question, stating that his stand on the matter was irrelevant.
“If he has support from his supporters, it doesn’t matter whether I support him or not,” he said.
Yesterday, PH ticked off Hishammuddin “and his colleagues”, urging them to stop pushing the idea of a government without DAP and Amanah.
“Hishammuddin, in his writing and interviews, has signalled a tendency to return to race-based politics and governance,” PH secretaries-general said in a joint statement.
Meanwhile, Umno vice-president Ismail Sabri appeared to distance the party from the alleged plan, saying questions on this matter should be referred to Hishammuddin.
“You should ask Sembrong because this is his own doing, maybe. I don’t know. The party doesn’t know, we never discussed this.
“Anything related to political cooperation, (the decision) must come from the party. Something as important as this, the supreme council must decide,” he added.
Ismail, who is also parliamentary opposition leader, said Hishammuddin had not discussed the matter with him.
The latest twist to the succession saga comes amid Khairy Jamaluddin stating that the uncertainty on whether Mahathir would pass the baton to Anwar is affecting investor confidence.
“This is a serious problem. Because, if there isn’t a clear timeline that states when the power transition would take place, businesses do not invest,” Khairy told the Dewan Rakyat on Monday.
“This is the feedback I received from local as well as international companies which said that Malaysia is unique because political certainty is closely related to investment decision,” he added.
Earlier report: Oct 15, PH Tells Hisham to Stop Pushing for Government Without DAP, Amanah