Anwar plays down claims of 40 Umno MPs jumping ship

Anwar Ibrahim expresses confidence in the agreement among Pakatan Harapan component parties.

KUALA LUMPUR: Anwar Ibrahim today played down claims that 40 Umno MPs would defect to PPBM, saying there was nothing to worry about.

“I do not doubt the agreement and understanding among us (Pakatan Harapan),” the PKR president-elect said at the Dewan Rakyat lobby this evening.

He was asked to comment on a claim by PPBM Supreme Council member A Kadir Jasin.

The veteran newsman said that the MPs had met PPBM top leaders including chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad and president Muhyiddin Yassin, either individually or in groups.

This led to Umno information chief, Shamsul Anuar Nasarah, claiming that it was a ploy to prevent Anwar from becoming the next prime minister.

Kadir, however, rubbished Shamsul’s claim, noting that making Anwar the country’s eight prime minister was something that had been agreed on even before the May 9 polls.

“It was discussed even when Umno was still in power back then,” Kadir was quoted as saying.

Anwar, who is the Port Dickson MP, said the claim that it was a ploy to prevent him from becoming prime minister was based on the media’s interpretation of the matter.

“This is how the media read it. They believed that a conspiracy to topple me, like what had happened in 1998, would happen again,” he said referring to his sacking and eventual arrest.