PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad says PPBM leaders had pushed for the party’s exit from Pakatan Harapan (PH) because of its fellow component DAP.
Mahathir, who was PPBM chairman when the party left PH, said this when explaining why he had resigned as prime minister, triggering a political crisis which ended with the appointment of PPBM president Muhyiddin Yassin as prime minister and the formation of the Perikatan Nasional government.
In a video released today, he said PPBM leaders had pressed for the party’s exit from PH, a move which he said had no basis as the coalition had given him its full support in deciding when he would leave office.
Mahathir was named as PH’s prime ministerial candidate in an agreement prior to the 14th general election in May 2018.
As part of the deal, he was supposed to hand over power to PKR president Anwar Ibrahim at an unspecified date.
“When the decision was made (at the last PH presidential council meeting) and I got the full support of PH, I told Muhyiddin, why should we quit PH when I have full support?
“If there are other reasons, wait, we will quit PH. But he was of the view that we needed to quit PH today, otherwise the Malays would be crushed by DAP.”
But Mahathir said he did not believe that DAP could so easily crush the Malays. He said he had asked PPBM leaders to wait and to think thoroughly about the repercussions of leaving PH as it had won the general election.
“And we were with them. With their support, we gained victory,” he said, adding that PPBM could not suddenly reject PH and work with Umno and PAS which he said were lost and marred by corruption.
However, he said the PPBM leaders had ignored his views and left PH.
“I thought about this – if my party rejected me, I needed to resign. That is why I resigned as PH chairman and then PM,” he said.
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