Pakatan still free to criticise govt despite MoU, Dr M told

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Mahathir “mistaken” in thinking that PH would not play its role as the opposition just because it has signed an MoU with the government.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Pakatan Harapan and the government does not prevent the opposition pact from criticising and keeping Putrajaya in check, Dr Mahathir Mohamad has been told.

Speaking to FMT, Charles Santiago of DAP and PKR’s Fahmi Fadzil said PH leaders have made it clear that they would continue to play their role as an opposition force.

They were commenting on Mahathir’s remarks yesterday that Pejuang would not sign an MoU with Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s administration as the opposition must be free to keep the government in check.

Santiago said the contents of the MoU, which is available online, did not seek to prevent or stop the opposition from criticising the government.

“In fact, in terms of the federal budget, the opposition has a role to play and if the opposition is not happy with the budget, we don’t have to support it.

“There is no compulsion for the opposition to back the government.

“In fact, in recent days, PH leaders have been vocal on issues like the proposed amendment of the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 and the appointment of Ismail’s brother as Nafas chairman.”

Nafas is the acronym for the National Farmers’ Organisation.

Santiago, the Klang MP, said though PH signed the MoU, the reforms it is pushing for benefit all opposition parties and MPs.

“For example, giving the opposition leader the resources and rights to better play his function applies to whoever leads the opposition. It is not limited to PH alone.”

Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi meanwhile said Mahathir was “mistaken” in thinking that PH would not play its role as the opposition just because it has signed an MoU with the government.

“In the past week, Anwar Ibrahim, Lim Guan Eng and Mohamad Sabu have made it clear through their speeches in the Dewan Rakyat that PH will continue to keep the government in check.

“We will continue to criticise and confront policies that are not good for the country.”

Fahmi said PH had also made this clear to Pejuang president Mukhriz Mahathir and secretary-general Amiruddin Hamzah in a meeting prior to the signing of the MoU. – FMT