KUALA LUMPUR, June 19 — DAP and Amanah today urged PKR to return to Pakatan Harapan’s consensus to back Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as the ninth prime minister if Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim fails to achieve majority support in parliament.
In a joint statement, DAP organising secretary Anthony Loke and Amanah communications director Khalid Abdul Samad claimed that Pakatan Harapan (PH) had agreed on two options during a meeting on May 30 with the first being Anwar as the prime minister while the second is for Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to once again helm the post.
“After exhausting all efforts, we found that the first option had only managed to gain support from a maximum of 96 MPs. Of this figure, 91 were from Harapan and the rest were Dr Mahathir and the four Bersatu MPs aligned to him.
“We hope that efforts to gain support through the second option can be made as agreed as the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government is clearly causing damage to the country’s institutions and finances.
“Given that the options have been discussed and agreed it is hoped that PKR will agree to the decision by the PH presidential council chaired by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim himself and accept the second option,” they said in the joint statement.
Earlier today, PKR central leadership council (MPP) today rejected the suggestion that Dr Mahathir is nominated as Pakatan Plus’ prime minister candidate, saying it will stick by its president Anwar.
In a statement today signed by their MPPs and MPs, the party said it remains open to talks with all parties, including Dr Mahathir, and is committed to saving Malaysia and restoring the people’s mandate.
Yesterday, PH secretary-general Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail revealed that, in its discussions with Dr Mahathir’s Bersatu faction and Parti Warisan Sabah, the party never officially nominated the elder statesman as its prime ministerial candidate.
Instead, Saifuddin, who is also PKR secretary-general, said that in its seven meetings since May 30, the coalition has been consistent in nominating Anwar as its main candidate to lead the “restoration of the people’s mandate” discussion with their allies.
On Wednesday, Loke said both his party and Parti Amanah Negara are backing Dr Mahathir as the candidate, with PKR the only party yet to agree to it.
Loke also said that DAP had initially agreed to a PH proposal for Anwar to be prime minister, with disputed Bersatu deputy president Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir as the deputy. But the suggestion was rejected by Warisan, leading PH to return to the “fallback” plan of a Dr Mahathir-Anwar combo.
PH was supposed to give their answer on Tuesday; however, Saifudin previously said Anwar is unavailable as he has a scheduled visit to Sarawak.
Malay Mail previously reported that Anwar is trying to canvass support for his premiership from East Malaysian MPs.