Challenged by Umno veteran Tan Sri Shahrir Samad to dissolve the Johor government if he can, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has upped the ante by saying that he has no qualms about doing so.
However, Muhyiddin said he would not do it because he cares for the people of the state.
“Don’t challenge me. I’m the president of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) and (chairman of) Perikatan Nasional. I’m thinking about the welfare of the people now, Shahrir isn’t.
“If he wants me to press the button, I will. Do you want to see that happen? I’m not afraid, but…I don’t want what happened to the people of Melaka to (happen to) Johoreans,” he told a press conference after visiting an operations centre in Bemban on Friday (Nov 12).
Without mincing words, Muhyiddin described Shahrir’s challenge to him to trigger the dissolution of the Johor state assembly as “bodoh” (stupid).
“I’m sorry. I’ve known him for a long time, but you have to be reasonable. When times are so hard, it’s about the people’s lives and their interests, not about power.
“Sorry to say, but Shahrir has lost his bearings. He doesn’t make sense anymore. He’s more concerned about power,” he added.
Muhyiddin pointed out that Shahrir even lost in the 14th General Election when he contested the Johor Baru parliamentary seat under Umno.
“It’s as though he’s angry that he lost in the last elections.
“I’m sorry, it’s hard, but I think it’s unreasonable and irresponsible (to suggest dissolving the assembly). Johoreans should be mad at Shahrir for even suggesting this,” he said.
Earlier on Friday, Shahrir said Johor Umno was always ready if Muhyiddin wanted to withdraw Perikatan’s support of the state government.
Shahrir dared Muhyiddin to withdraw the coalition’s support after the former prime minister had apparently said during a virtual ceramah on Thursday (Nov 11) night that if one or two assemblymen retracted support in Johor, the state government would collapse.
Meanwhile, Muhyiddin said Perikatan’s election machinery in Melaka has made ample preparations ahead of polling day on Nov 20 and urged the authorities not to organise roadblocks at state borders.
“Let those from KL come and vote.
“I’m worried that if many are not coming out to vote, then who will vote?” he said.
Nevertheless, Muhyiddin said it was necessary to abide by Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) to ensure that there are no spikes in case numbers again.
“I’m urging the people to come out and vote, but abide by all SOPs,” he added.
Early polling for Melaka has been set for Nov 16, with polling day on Nov 20. – The Star