KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 23 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is not scheduled to issue an announcement tonight, said an aide amid intense rumours that a new coalition government will be formed.
The aide also said Dr Mahathir will not go to the Sheraton Hotel in Petaling Jaya where politicians seen as aligned with him are congregating.
“No announcement. No press conference tonight,” the aide said when asked about political party leaders calling unexpectedly at the Istana Negara this evening.
After a day of unexpected party meetings, leaders from Umno and PAS arrived at the Sheraton Hotel here and swiftly entered a meeting room to join PKR MPs from Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali’s so-called “cartel”.
Among them were Umno’s Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Mansor, Tan Sri Annuar Musa, and Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
PAS was represented by Datuk Seri Hadi Awang, Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan, Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man and Nik Mohamad Zawawi Salleh.
Also present was Bersatu’s Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.
However, all refused to say why they were gathered here when approached by reporters.
“Wait for later,” Annuar said.
Speculation about a possible change of government went into overdrive today when the major political parties arranged impromptu meetings, after the Pakatan Harapan presidential council met to discuss the contentious power transition on Friday.
On Friday, Bersatu warned that it could leave PH after some leaders tried to make Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad fix a date for when he will step down as the prime minister.
Earlier today, sources told Malay Mail that leaders of political parties allegedly planning a new coalition government were granted an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah at Istana Negara today.
These include Bersatu president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, Gabungan Parti Sarawak chairman Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Openg, Warisan president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal, and Azmin.