PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim is still Pakatan Harapan’s choice for prime minister, the coalition’s presidential council said today.
The nod includes DAP and Amanah, which were earlier said to support Parti Warisan Sabah president Mohd Shafie Apdal as the candidate for the top job.
Meanwhile, Anwar has also been given the council’s full trust to continue talks with all parties, including Shafie, towards retaking Putrajaya from the Perikatan Nasional government, the council added.
These issues were discussed at a meeting today, during which the council reaffirmed the “original position” of Anwar, the PKR president and opposition Leader, as its choice for prime minister.
“On the matter of restoring the people’s mandate and restoring PH as the federal government, we are committed to the original position of Anwar Ibrahim as our candidate for prime minister.
“We also discussed the nomination of Shafie,” the council said in a statement signed by Anwar, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng.
The council said Anwar would continue discussions with all parties, including Shafie’s nomination.
“All efforts to restoring the people’s mandate must continue and needs the support of all parties. Anwar is given the full mandate to continue discussions, including with Shafie, towards that end.”
PH has been dogged by disagreement over a candidate amid speculation that a snap general election will be called soon.
Shafie’s name emerged after Anwar and PKR rejected proposals to nominate two-time prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to the post again, even for six months only.
On June 27, Dr Mahathir said that he, DAP, Amanah and Warisan had agreed to naming Shafie. He said the agreement was reached at an informal meeting that was not attended by PKR.
However, shortly after Dr Mahathir’s statement, DAP said the matter still had to be discussed by the presidential council.
Today, the council also rejected the motion by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin to remove Dewan Rakyat Speaker Mohamad Ariff Yusof and Deputy Speaker Nga Kor Ming at the coming parliamentary sitting, starting July 13.
The council also decided that if a snap general election is to be called, state governments under PH will continue and the legislative assemblies will not be dissolved, so that PH states can continue helping the people during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
On Saturday, Anwar assured the public that the coalition is stable and ready to speak up for the people as it did before.
Anwar said while it appeared that PH, now known as PH Plus, has some disagreement with who would be their prime minister candidate, this issue did not affect PH as a coalition and the struggles it stands for.