Dr M: No Handover Date, It’s Up to Me

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I have to be patient, Anwar says.

The Pakatan Harapan presidential council has left it to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to decide on a post-Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) transition of power.

Pakatan Harapan’s top leaders last night agreed not to fix a specific date on Dr Mahathir Mohamad to hand over power to Anwar Ibrahim.


“The agreement is that it is up to me when to resign,” Dr Mahathir told reporters.

At the same conference, Anwar said he too agreed with the decision.

“Our stand is clear. There is no doubt about our commitment. Dr Mahathir can continue his duties as prime minister with full support.

“In our discussion, I suggested that Dr Mahathir be given the chance to govern and decide on the right time (to resign). I have to be patient in the meantime,” the PKR president said.

Speaking at a late-night press conference in Putrajaya, Dr Mahathir said this was a unanimous decision.

“We have discussed this in length, I don’t have to repeat what we decided on.

“There were two opinions, and in the end, it was all left up to me. What I say they will follow.

“The transition will take place after Apec, there is no timeframe. It is up to me whether let go (of power) or not. That was the trust given to me,” Dr Mahathir said.

He was flanked on either side by his would-be successor Anwar Ibrahim and the current Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

Asked if the plan was still for Anwar to be Malaysia’s eighth PM, Dr Mahathir emphatically said: “That doesn’t arise. The position is for me to make the decision after Apec.”

Asked what will happen if Dr Mahathir refuses to vacate his position after the summit, the 94-year-old simply said: “That’s up to me.”

Dr Mahathir denied that changes to the cabinet were discussed.

“We did not talk about changes to the cabinet, just discussed a deadline. But that will be left to me. I will decide when I resign.

“Other than that, we also discussed the Sarawak elections, and we will decide our candidates to avoid contesting against each other.

“We will also hold a PH convention at a later date.”