PETALING JAYA: History will be kind to Ismail Sabri Yaakob due to the decisions he made during his 15-month tenure as the prime minister, former Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin said.
Khairy said Ismail’s decision to sign a memorandum of understanding with then opposition Pakatan Harapan led to political stability.
Ismail also oversaw the reopening of industries following the movement restrictions imposed at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, the former health minister said.
“His slogan wasn’t threatening, I mean Keluarga Malaysia, how neutral can you get?” Khairy, who served in Ismail’s Cabinet, said in a podcast yesterday, referring to slogans prime ministers adopt when they come to power.
“And other reforms he brought, formed laws in Parliament … I think history will be very kind to him.”
While Khairy did not specify what reforms, the anti-hopping law was passed, and equal allocation was given to opposition MPs, when Ismail was at the helm.
Ismail became the country’s ninth prime minister when he succeeded Muhyiddin Yassin, who stepped down in August 2021 after Umno withdrew its support for him, and subsequently its support for the Perikatan Nasional government.
Khairy said Ismail had a clear roadmap to lead the nation out of the pandemic and that “we got most of the big calls right”, including the reopening of the economic sectors.
“Ismail Sabri gave us the mandate to implement (whatever programmes), and I think because of our political environment, many forgot our efforts to put Malaysia on a strong footing in 2022,” he said.