KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 30 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad must clarify whether there are discussions underway to allow Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir to contest the 14th general election under a Barisan Nasional ticket, Tunku Abdul Aziz Tunku Ibrahim has said.
The former Transparency International-Malaysia vice-chairman said such a move, if true, was proof that Dr Mahathir had no faith in Pakatan Harapan (PH) and Mukhiz’s chances of winning a seat under an Opposition ticket.
“This could be part of his tactical arsenal, and for him to make such a U-turn shows that he is now in desperation,” NST Online quoted Tunku Abdul Aziz as saying yesterday.
“Dr Mahathir must now come forward and explain whether such allegations are true and if they are true, then he should clarify what this is all about,” he added.
Dr Mahathir is currently the chairman of PH and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM), while Mukhriz is PPBM’s deputy president.
Tun Abdul Aziz was referring to an allegation made by blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin recently.
The blogger alleged that Dr Mahathir would cooperate with BN and Umno should Mukhriz be allowed to contest GE14 as a BN candidate.
“It is all to serve his own agenda. Ultimately, it is up to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak whether to accept the terms offered by Dr Mahathir,” Tun Abdul Aziz was quoted saying.
“He will offer to stop his continuous tirade against Najib, in exchange for a place for Mukhriz back in Umno, simply because he knows that only by being in Umno, can he stand a chance of ascending to the prime minister’s post.
“He will then expect the Umno hierarchy to smoothen Mukhriz’s path to the top. If this actually happens, it would simply be cynical,” said Tunku Abdul Aziz.
He added that it was unlikely that PM Najib would agree to it, and that PH as a coalition is currently wracked with turmoil over who should be prime minister should they win GE14.
“They are talking about temporary PMs, like (Datuk Seri) Wan Azizah Wan Ismail warming the seat while awaiting (Datuk Seri) Anwar Ibrahim’s release from prison. There can be no such thing as temporary PMs, it’s ridiculous,” he said.
The Opposition coalition recently proposed Dr Mahathir as prime minister and PKR president Dr Wan Azizah as his deputy, should they win the next general election.
The choice was reportedly agreed by the coalition’s “G5”, comprising PH chairman Dr Mahathir, president Dr Wan Azizah, and deputy presidents Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Guan Eng and Mohamed Sabu.