KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 26 — Tan Sri Annuar Musa has claimed today that either Datuk Seri Azmin Ali or Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad could have spread misinformation on the clandestine meeting in the PKR deputy president’s home.
The Umno secretary-general said his long experience with the prime minister has taught him that one must “read between the lines” on what Dr Mahathir said, rather than take him at face value.
“There are two possibilities, the first one, it is possible for Datuk Seri Azmin to give a false report to Dr Mahathir or Datuk Seri Azmin did provide a correct report, but Dr Mahathir lied,” he told reporters here.
“So, I cannot confirm the facts, but such statements have been refuted by the MPs. All of them have issued a media statement in writing, denying the statement said by the prime minister.”
“However, what do people say... ‘we are all devils and we know each other very well’, so I always read between the lines of any statement by Dr Mahathir and not just take the literal interpretation of whatever he said,’’ he added.
Annuar was responding to Dr Mahathir’s revelation that the 17 Umno MPs who went to meet with Azmin, two days after Pakatan Harapan’s loss in Tanjung Piai, was to discuss possibilities of them defecting to the ruling coalition.
He also said that Umno has no intention of barring its elected representative from engaging with other federal lawmakers in their own personal capacity.
“We want to be a responsible opposition, but doesn’t mean you cannot engage or completely cut off from those in power. It is alright as long as there is certain decorum and ethics you must observe.
“For example, if you want to avoid from being misconstrued, it is better you inform the party as a precaution, but of course we don’t intend to put up a total barrier because we are all friends, at personal level, we are all friends,’’ he said referring to MPs on both side of the political divide.
Last week, Umno disciplinary chairman Tan Sri Apandi Ali has reportedly confirmed that several complaints have been against the 22 lawmakers that included former vice-president Hishammuddin and cousin of former leader Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
He added that the disciplinary board will investigate and take necessary action if the 22 breached the Umno constitution.
Among those who attended the meeting include Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin, Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar, Sembrong MP Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and Cameron Highlands MP Ramli Mohd Noor.