Former prime minister also laughs off claims of two camps in PPBM, one in support of him and the other, of president Muhyiddin Yassin
SHAH ALAM: “No, no, no,” says Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad to the question on whether he would consider taking on the post of prime minister after the next general election.
The question was prompted after survey results published by Institut Darul Ehsan (IDE) last month, showed Mahathir was the most preferred candidate for the nation’s top post, at least among Malay voters.
He even beat former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and PPBM president Muhyiddin Yassin in the polls conducted on 1,761 registered voters.
“I already said I would not even contest in the next election,” Mahathir, who is the nation’s longest serving prime minister, told a press conference at the PKNS complex here today.
“And we haven’t even discussed the post of the prime minister. Now it’s only about winning the election.
“The question of who will be the (next) prime minister does not arise, and will not arise, until we win.”
Mahathir also laughed off suggestions that there were factions within his party.
Claims had been made of two camps within PPBM, one supporting the 91-year-old, the other, party president Muhyiddin Yassin.
“There are some quarters who want to see us fight as they feel left out,” said Muhyiddin.
“But we have absolutely no problem with each other. In fact, we work closely almost every day, talking about the country’s problems and the future of our party.
“Even yesterday I was with him (Mahathir) until 2am. This shows that we have solid cooperation.”
He added the allegations were nothing more than malicious slander.
Meanwhile, when asked if the early retirement of former top graft buster Bahri Mohd Zin was in any way linked to him, Mahathir asked, “Who is Bahri?”
Bahri had on Tuesday announced his retirement as Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) special operations division director due to his disappointment over the handling of the SRC International case.
However a source who spoke to FMT alleged otherwise, saying it was due to revelations that Mahathir’s children owned stakes in more than 400 companies, including government-related entities, under Bahri’s watch.
“MACC has the right to investigate anyone and I have no objection to it, as long as it is done properly (and) based on facts, not affiliation to any political party or individual,” said Mahathir.
“We want to see justice done. If we have done anything wrong, investigate us.”