PETALING JAYA: In the wake of the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government, members of the main political forces were huddled in separate meetings this evening.
The leaderships of Barisan Nasional and PAS held a joint meeting at Umno headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, while PPBM leaders met at their party headquarters in Petaling Jaya and members of a breakaway PKR faction held an emergency meeting at a hotel in Petaling Jaya.
Members of Pakatan Harapan – which now comprises PKR, DAP and Amanah following the departure of PPBM – are to meet tomorrow after a meeting today was postponed.
The meetings come in the wake of the resignation of the prime minister, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, this morning, resulting in the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan coalition government that he led.
His resignation ended the tenure of his Cabinet, and Istana Negara announced this evening that all ministerial and allied appointments had been revoked.
Mahathir also resigned as chairman of PPBM this morning, and PKR president Anwar Ibrahim and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng both said he had resigned because of the moves to form an alliance with Umno.
Barisan Nasional and PAS leaders were meeting at a restaurant at Umno headquarters this evening, chaired by Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang.
Among leaders present were Umno vice-president Ismail Sabri who is opposition leader; Kubang Kerian MP and PAS deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man; Bachok MP Nik Abduh Nik Aziz; Padang Terap MP Mahdzir Khalid; and MIC’s Tapah MP M Saravanan.
Media representatives waiting at the restaurant were told to wait outside while the shutters to the restaurant were pulled down.
PPBM leaders were at a meeting at party headquarters. Among those seen entering the building were party president Muhyiddin Yassin, deputy president Mukhriz Mahathir, information chief Mohd Radzi Md Jidin, Youth leader Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman and secretary-general Marzuki Yahya.
A member of PPBM Youth, who declined to be identified, told FMT, that the meeting was being held to discuss PPBM’s position and stance after it announced this morning that it was quitting the Pakatan Harapan coalition.
At the Sofitel hotel, a meeting was being held by members of the breakaway PKR faction led by former deputy president Azmin Ali who was expelled from the party this morning together with vice-president Zuraida Kamaruddin.
Among those seen making their way to the hotel were former secretary-general Saifuddin Abdullah and Bandar Tun Razak MP Kamarudin Jaffar. They were among 9 members who resigned from PKR this morning and said they would form an independent bloc in Parliament.
Azmin and PPBM president Muhyiddin Yassin have been accused of plotting to pressure Mahathir to form a new government with Umno and PAS, .
The PKR members who resigned were Saifuddin and Kamarudin, Works Minister Baru Bian (MP for Selangau), Mansor Othman (Nibong Tebal), deputy Dewan Rakyat Speaker Rashid Hasnon (Batu Pahat), Santhara Kumar (Segamat), Ali Biju (Saratok), Willie Mongin (Puncak Borneo) and Jonathan Yasin (Ranau).
Earlier today, Barisan Nasional MPs held a closed-door meeting after lunch which ended around 8pm.
Saravanan said MIC would stand by BN. He said BN was confident of forming a new government and may seek an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the formation of a new coalition.
MCA president Wee Ka Siong said it was up to the King to form a new government. “If it is meant for us to have a general election, we will face it,” added Wee.