Johor Bersatu has dismissed allegations that there would be mutiny among its ranks to join the party Dr Mahathir Mohamad plans to set up.
Johor Bersatu chairman Mazlan Bujang said the heads of all 26 divisions in the state and their members support the leadership of party president Muhyiddin Yassin.
Johor Bersatu does not have any internal problems, he said.
“Johor is well under control and we do not have problems…the 26 division heads are still with the president.
“We will continue to support the leadership of Tan Sri Muhyiddin, who is also the prime minister,” he told a press conference in Iskandar Puteri today.
Mazlan was asked whether there would be an exodus of party members from Johor following former Bersatu chairman Dr Mahathir’s announcement on Friday that he would set up a new Malay party.
Mazlan said it was Dr Mahathir’s right to set up a party and that the former prime minister has his followers.
“For sure Tun has support…this is inevitable, but in Johor Bersatu maybe less than 5% (of members) support Tun,” he added.
He said Muhyiddin has solid support and influence.
Previously, during the height of the “Sheraton Move” crisis, 19 out of 26 Johor Bersatu divisions had declared their support for Mahathir after Muhyiddin had reportedly greenlit a coup in the state.
It is not clear if these allegiances remain the same as Mahathir camp’s state leader then, Mazlan Bujang, is now part of the PN state government.
Not long after PN took over the state, there were murmurs of dissent within Johor Bersatu with some leaders unhappy at being sidelined by Umno in the new state government.
A counter-coup was reportedly in the works but this was stopped by Johor’s Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar who threatened to dissolve the state assembly if there was another power struggle.
Quizzed on whether the new party had sparked renewed negotiations, a Johor Harapan source said there were rumours that Bersatu assemblypersons would defect to Mahathir’s party.
He said the picture would be made clearer during the Slim by-election in Perak, which will be contested by the Mahathir faction.