Don’t dream of being PM again, DAP rep tells Dr Mahathir

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Dr Mahathir Mohamad should stop “dreaming” about becoming prime minister for a third time and just leave PKR president Anwar Ibrahim alone, said DAP’s Sekinchan assemblyman Ng Suee Lim.

The party’s Selangor vice-chairman said that, while DAP shares the two-time prime minister’s ideology, his problems with Anwar have caused fractures within Pakatan Harapan.

“Do we really still want to work with Dr Mahathir? I think as long as he is on the same page as us in our struggles and ideology, then he is part of the opposition.

“Yet, as far as becoming prime minister again, I’m sorry, our only choice is Anwar,” said Ng, who is also Speaker for the Selangor Assembly.

Ng spoke to The Malaysian Insight recently on his views about possible co-operation between DAP and Umno to oust the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government led by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, who betrayed Dr Mahathir and PH by leading Bersatu out of the PH coalition to form a new government in late February last year.

Dr Mahathir now heads a new party, Pejuang, after being ejected from Bersatu by Muhyiddin. Pejuang is not part of PH but counts itself among the opposition ranks. Meanwhile, Pejuang’s official status is in question, with the Registrar of Societies rejecting its application to be recognised.

Dr Mahathir had set aside past enmity with Anwar for the 2018 general election, which PH won, ending six decades of Barisan Nasional rule.

There was even a pre-election agreement between all PH parties that Anwar would take over form the nonagenarian as prime minister before the PH government’s five-year term was up.

The details of the transition plan were being discussed when PN ousted PH last year.

Now, out of power, Dr Mahathir has been saying that he never thought Anwar would have made a good PM, that he could never get along with his former protege, and that he never believed the Anwar’s assertions he had the numbers to change the government.

Ng said it was Dr Mahathir who did not keep his promise to hand over to Anwar, while Anwar never betrayed him.

“Dr Mahathir kept saying that Anwar cannot gain power because he refuses to co-operate, but why can’t Dr Mahathir work with Anwar instead?

“I believe that Dr Mahathir has failed to uphold his promise made since the start of the struggle, but Anwar did not betray him,” the four-term Sekinchan rep said.

Ng added that Dr Mahathir should consider the views of others, and let Anwar and PH take the lead instead of wasting time attempting to undermine the coalition.

“DAP must be steadfast in its alliance with PKR and Amanah, the party has been through thick and thin with Anwar until today. Such staunch allies are hard to find these days.

“If you say having Anwar lead PH is problematic, other options are also problematic. It is difficult to find anyone else to lead the struggle. There are no ‘perfect’ Malay leaders out there.

“So, who we do have but Anwar? We want Dr Mahathir to stop dreaming about becoming prime minister for the third time. He keeps saying that Anwar does not have enough Malay support, but this is not true.

“In GE13 (in 2013), we received many Malay votes, and we did not have Dr Mahathir in our corner at that time,” he said.

Dr Mahathir formed Bersatu in 2016 and thereafter joined PH for the 2018 election campaign.

Ng also said Dr Mahathir had spoken wrongly for DAP, when he said DAP had supported other candidates for prime minister instead of Anwar.

When Warisan president Mohd Shafie Apdal’s name was raised as an alternative to Anwar for the PM post, Dr Mahathir said the suggestion came from DAP.

“Yes, this may have come up in previous negotiations, but for Dr Mahathir to make such allegations does not help the alliance. We have said before that we can co-operate with Dr Mahathir after he resigned as prime minister, but he keeps throwing a spanner in the works.”

Ng also feels that Dr Mahathir owes the country an “apology” over his resignation as PM, after Muhyiddin took Bersatu out of the coalition last year.

“Muhyiddin has not resigned despite losing majority support in the Dewan Rakyat (now), which was the opposite of what Dr Mahathir did when PH lost power.

“So why did Dr Mahathir resign back then? I think he owes all Malaysians an apology for his hasty decision,” Ng said.

When Muhyiddin pulled Bersatu out of the PH alliance, the government lost its majority in the Dewan Rakyat and Dr Mahathir resigned as prime minister, ending the coalition’s 22-month rule.

After the PH government’s fall, some quarters had accused Dr Mahathir of unilaterally resigning as prime minister.

However, he said he resigned because Bersatu’s exit from PH made his position untenable, according to the federal constitution. – TMIaddedbestow a quality onMore (Definitions, Synonyms, Translation)