KUALA LUMPUR: Umno veteran Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, who is a former finance minister, said today a new government was needed quickly to improve Malaysia’s sagging economy.
He viewed as a positive move the current flurry of actions by political leaders to form a new government which caused the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan administration.
“It’s a good thing that we involve ourselves (in the political movements) to ensure people will get a better government,” he said when met at Umno headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.
Umno’s leadership council has been holding discussions on the formation of a new governing coalition with PAS, PPBM, a breakaway PKR faction, and others.
Razaleigh said: “The economy is not doing good right now. We need to find a solution as (the value of) our ringgit has fallen sharply.”
Razaleigh said a prime minister should be appointed quickly, following the resignation of Dr Mahathir Mohamad and the collapse of the current administration.
“No one is in the office anymore and all the ministers in the government have fallen,” he said.
“The uncertainty also indirectly affects the current economic situation. Our stock market was hit hard when it became known that the Mahathir government had fallen,” he said.
On the stock market today, the Bursa Malaysia index ended at its lowest level since 2011.
When asked if he was listed as a candidate for prime minister, he answered: “Really? Thank you very much.”
Razaleigh’s name has often cropped up in discussions about the premiership from the days when he mounted a challenge against Mahathir and came close to taking over as Umno president in 1987.