Mahathir says he’s just a temporary education minister

Dr Mahathir Mohamad says he would accept it if anyone wishes to resign from the Cabinet.

LANGKAWI: Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has stressed that he will cease being the interim education minister once a suitable person is found to take over for the portfolio.

The prime minister said he was acting in that capacity on a temporary basis.

“Once someone is picked to take over (education minister’s post), I will relinquish it. It’s only temporary,” he told reporters after presenting prizes at the closing ceremony of the Royal Langkawi International Regatta 2020 here tonight.

Asked whether the new minister would be a Member of Parliament from PPBM, Mahathir said that is the usual practice.

Yesterday, the Prime Minister’s office said in a statement that the Cabinet had decided that Mahathir would be acting education minister from Jan 3 until the next education minister is appointed.

Maszlee Malik resigned as education minister on Jan 3 after holding the post for 20 months.

Asked if the appointment of the new education minister would indicate that a cabinet reshuffle would be done soon, he said: “I do not know about a cabinet reshuffle but for sure there will be a new education minister.”

Asked on the possibility of other ministers wanting to resign, Mahathir said he is willing to accept if anyone wants to resign.

Mahathir also said the government was studying the possibility of splitting the ministry into education ministry and higher education ministry as was done before.