I’ll keep my promise to hand over power to Anwar, says Mahathir

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad campaigning for PKR president Anwar Ibrahim during the Port Dickson by-election in October. The PPBM chairman says he will hand over power to Anwar despite various views on the matter.

PUTRAJAYA: PPBM chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad today reiterated he will hand over his position as prime minister to PKR president Anwar Ibrahim, as promised previously.

“Different people have their views. They have their own views, but a promise is a promise,” he told reporters at the PPBM annual general assembly at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) today.

The prime minister was asked to comment on a motion moved by Kelantan delegate Zulkifli Zakaria during a debate on the president’s policy speech this morning, proposing for Mahathir to remain as prime minister until the 15th general election (GE15).

Mahathir is expected to comment on the motion in the winding up speech this evening.

Mahathir had, in November last year, promised that the prime ministership would be handed over to Anwar after a period of two years.

The Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman said he agreed to be prime minister as Anwar was still in prison when the pact came into power as the new government.

“I promise I will not stay long as prime minister. Maybe two years, maybe more, maybe less,” he said previously.

Meanwhile, PPBM deputy president Mukhriz Mahathir voiced support for the motion to have Mahathir stay on as prime minister.

He said Mahathir needed to be given space to restore the country before handing over power to his successor, Anwar.

“As far as I know, it is not contradictory as we are still planning for Anwar to become the prime minister after Mahathir.

“The issue here is time. We need to ensure that the government is able to resolve what it needs to resolve, and only then will we be comfortable with the situation,” he said.

PPBM Youth chief Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman said the wing would respect and adhere to whatever decision taken by Mahathir.

The Muar MP, however said the motion on the matter should first be discussed at the PH Presidential Council level.

“PPBM Youth will give full support to Mahathir, according to what he wants. We must listen to him. We will support him.

“But as I have said many times before, this matter needs to be discussed at the PH Presidential Council level. This is because the PH consensus keeps us together,” he added.