Acceptance of 7 into PPBM disheartening, say DAP leaders

The former Umno MPs who were accepted into PPBM yesterday.

PETALING JAYA: Two DAP leaders have expressed concern over the acceptance of seven former Umno MPs into PPBM, with one of them asking if they had been properly vetted.

“It is really disheartening what Dr M is doing,” Selangor DAP committee member Ronnie Liu said today, referring to PPBM chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s announcement yesterday that the seven had been accepted into the party.

“So, what happens if more Umno frogs abandon ship and ask to join Bersatu (PPBM)? Will they take them in en masse like this? Are we witnessing the reverse takeover of Bersatu by ex-Umno guys?

“This is not what the rakyat voted for in GE14,” Liu asked in a posting on Facebook accompanied by the hashtag #betrayal.

Yesterday, former minister Hamzah Zainuddin, former deputy ministers Mas Ermieyati Samsudin and Abdul Latiff Ahmad and MPs Ikmal Hisham Abdul Aziz (Tanah Merah), Mohamad Fasiah Mohd Fakeh (Sabak Bernam), Rosol Wahid (Hulu Terengganu) and Shabudin Yahaya (Tasik Gelugor) were admitted into PPBM.

“Have all of them been vetted properly? Who knows? But we do know that Tasek Gelugor MP Shabudin Yahaya is not the kind of person we want in Bersatu,” Liu said, likely in reference to Shabudin’s controversial remarks on underage marriage two years ago.

In April 2017, Shabudin reportedly said there was nothing wrong with victims of statutory rape marrying their rapists to resolve the issue.

He subsequently claimed the media had taken his remarks out of context, saying he had never encouraged sexual crimes.

DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, who was the Penang chief minister at the time, branded Shahbudin a “monster” for suggesting this and urged Barisan Nasional to expel the MP from the coalition.

Meanwhile, Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Hannah Yeoh said Pakatan Harapan should be selective in the recruitment of members.

“Some are just opportunists who want to be part of the federal government without subscribing to the reforms and principles of good governance by Harapan in the last general election.”

Mahathir said yesterday the seven had been “vetted”, adding that this did not mean that they were “seeking protection” and that the party would not protect any wrongdoing.