Former Bersatu chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad will get the chance to square off against Perikatan Nasional in the Slim by-election after the newly formed coalition replaced Pakatan Harapan in February, a source told The Malaysian Insight.
The decision was reached at the PH presidential council meeting last night, said the source.
“We decided to let Bersatu Berprinsip contest this seat for the sake of opposition solidarity,” said the PH leader.
The seat was previously contested by Bersatu in 2018 before president and Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin withdrew the party from the coalition in February.
PN has not decided whether Umno or Bersatu will contest the seat.
Bersatu Berprinsip is the Bersatu faction led by Dr Mahathir after Muhyiddin sacked the former prime minister and five other MPs for not supporting his plan to work with Barisan Nasional to form PN in February.
Among those sacked were Syed Saddiq Abdul Raman (Muar), Mukhriz Mahathir (Jerlun), Amiruddin Hamzah (Kubang Pasu), Dr Maszlee Malik (Simpang Renggam) and Shahruddin Salleh (Sri Gading).
The Slim state seat fell vacant on July 15 following the death of assemblyman Mohd Khusairi Abdul Talib at Bentong Hospital in Pahang.
The 59-year-old four term assemblyman collapsed while playing golf at the Awana Genting Highlands Golf and Country Resort before he was rushed to hospital.
Khusairi, who was the Tanjong Malim Umno chief, obtained 8,327 votes in the three-cornered fight against Bersatu’s Mohd Amran Ibrahim (6,144) and PAS’ Muhammad Zulfadli Zainal (4,103) at the 2018 general election.
Last week, the Election Commission set polling for the Slim by-election on August 29 with nominations set for August 15. – TMI