One administration, many noises: Is Dr M’s Cabinet a hot mess?

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad pose for a group picture with the 111 youths and Cabinet minister after officiating the 2019 Perdana and Corporate Fellows internship programme in Putrajaya July 5, 2019. — Bernama pic
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad pose for a group picture with the 111 youths and Cabinet minister after officiating the 2019 Perdana and Corporate Fellows internship programme in Putrajaya July 5, 2019. — Bernama pic

COMMENTARY, Aug 29 — It has been more than a year since Pakatan Harapan took over Putrajaya, but recent developments suggest that all is not well within Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s administration.

While the prime minister has been single-minded and focused on his goal to fix the economy and attract more investments, his Cabinet members have been sending out mixed signals on a multitude of issues.

Recent issues like the proposed Khat lessons in primary schools and taking action against controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik have revealed the true colours of some of our federal ministers.

When pushed to a corner, some of them appear to have only their respective political party’s interests and supporters at heart and have repeatedly sent out conflicting statements.

You also have some ministers who make public announcements and decisions which are unrelated to their portfolios, inadvertently making their fellow Cabinet colleagues look bad.

As a result, the perception right now of the Cabinet is one that is a bit of a hot mess.

With PPBM and DAP at odds over deporting Dr Zakir, and PKR’s cold war between its top leaders, voters are getting restless.

Adding to the concerns of the Pakatan Harapan government and stakeholders are rumours of an impending Cabinet reshuffle.

It is unlikely for Dr Mahathir to call for a fresh general election at the moment. But a minor Cabinet reshuffle may be on the cards after the coming Merdeka Day celebration, with a re-alignment of agencies so that there will no longer be overlapping of roles and duties.

Whether this will help boost morale among PH or the public, only time can tell. But it is imperative that the ruling government get their act together, and soon.

Umno and PAS are already formalising their union, and this may very well affect the Malay vote in GE15, as all parties set out to try and woo over Undi18 voters.

And if GE14 has taught us anything, it is the fact that absolutely nothing is set in stone. If BN can be removed, it means that anyone can be voted out if they do not perform to the best of their abilities.

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