GEORGE TOWN: DAP’s P Ramasamy today hit back at PPBM’s Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman for “naming and shaming” fellow Pakatan Harapan representatives for wanting to hasten the change in prime minister.
Ramasamy said the PH representatives had merely asked Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to give an exact date so as to counter the numerous questions raised over an agreed transition of power to PKR president Anwar Ibrahim.
Earlier today, Syed Saddiq attacked those asking about when Mahathir would leave office, naming Ramasamy and eight others from the DAP and PKR.
Ramasamy told Syed Saddiq that no PH leader was forcing Mahathir to leave office and that even “the elder statesman” would not mind if fellow leaders asked for an exact date for the transition.
“Malaysians who wanted change supported Mahathir. The momentous regime change in 2018 would not have been possible without the reformasi movement ignited by Anwar.
“Without PKR and DAP joining forces, there was no way BN could have been politically toppled. But after the losses in five by-elections, there is a need to resolve the transition matter.
“For PH leaders to ask about the transition date now does not bring about instability or even affect Mahathir in carrying out his duties as PM.
“Even if Mahathir wants to hand over the premiership after the Asia-Pacific Economic summit in November, a date has to be set,” the Penang deputy chief minister II said.
Ramasamy reminded Syed Saddiq that the pre-2018 polls PH consensus was that Mahathir was to be interim prime minister for “about two years” before power was handed over to Anwar.
He said Syed Saddiq’s attack on fellow PH leaders was expected from a “newbie politician”. He reminded the young minister to respect the right to dissent if he believed in democracy.
“I suppose Saddiq is too much of a newcomer to understand and appreciate the political dynamics of the reformasi era, let alone understand the context in which Mahathir was made the interim prime minister.
“Syed Saddiq should just close his gap rather than question the democratic right of PKR and DAP leaders to ask the PM to honour the transition agreement.
“Anyway, who is he to tell me as to what I can say and not say?”