KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 29 — Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) secretary Datuk Marzuki Yahya today refuted party president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s claim that he is the party’s acting chairman now.
Marzuki insisted that Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is still the party’s chairman.
Earlier Muhyiddin named himself as the acting chairman, claiming Dr Mahathir’s resignation stands despite him being accepted back into the party almost immediately after his resignation.
In responding to this Marzuki denied Muhyiddin’s statement, citing Articles 16.2.1 and 16.2.2 of Bersatu’s constitution, which highlights the roles of a party president.
He cited Article 16.2.1 which states that a chairman acts as the key leader in the party, responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of the party’s governance and policies, and Article 16.2.2, which authorises the chairman to call Supreme Council meetings and chair the sessions.
“Therefore, in line with the rule of law principle and the party constitution, the only individual who possesses the ultimate power to lead the party is the chairman of Bersatu, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad,” Marzuki said.
Earlier Muhyiddin in his statement attributed his new role as being in accordance with Article 16.9 of the party’s constitution.
“According to Article 16.9 of Bersatu’s constitution, if the chairman quits or is sacked, then the president has to assume the role until an election is held to pick a new chairman.
“Bersatu has yet to hold an election to elect a new chairman. Therefore I, as the president, will be the acting chairman of Bersatu until an election is held soon,” Muhyiddin had said.
While Dr Mahathir had resigned from his position on Monday the party had rejected his resignation and convinced him to stay on, to which he agreed.
Much speculation remains as to who will become Malaysia’s eighth prime minister, with Muhyiddin initially in the spotlight, as he has the support of a faction within his party, along with former PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali’s block of independent MPs, Umno, PAS, MCA, MIC and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS).
However, Dr Mahathir as Bersatu chairman announced earlier this morning that he has sufficient numbers to become prime minister again, following a meeting with Pakatan Harapan.