KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad intimated that he may have alternatives after failing to register his latest vehicle Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang) as a political party.
The former prime minister who was booted out of Bersatu, the current ruling party he co-founded last year, said he did not understand why the Registrar of Societies refused to accept Pejuang, insisting it fulfilled all the requirements for registration.
“We followed all the steps and conditions but we still were not registered. So we need to find other ways, but we cannot reveal what is our plan A, plan B, or plan C,” he said in an interview with Sinar Harian aired on Facebook today.
He said that any entity in Malaysia has to be registered to be legal in the eyes of the law, and suggested Pejuang’s rejection was an attempt to prevent this.
“My only assumption is the government does not want any other party going against them during an election, and this goes against the principles of democracy,” said Dr Mahathir.
He added that he had seen similar rejections previously, before Pakatan Harapan (PH) took Putrajaya, and related that Bersatu had its registration status revoked in the weeks leading up to Election 2018.
“If you remember before the GE14, suddenly the registration of Bersatu was revoked and the registration of PH was also later rejected.
“Such moves by the government goes against the laws in the country, and the government should actually be there to help ease the work of the government agencies, and this is mentioned in the law.
He said the RoS’ track record in rejecting such applications only cements his view that the Muyiddin administration is more concerned by internal party politics and has no interest in fostering healthy competition.
Dr Mahathir said Pejuang was not a platform for him to return to power as alleged.
He insisted that his intention in forming another all-Malay party has been consistent throughout the decades — to safeguard the community’s future politically and economically.
“For 80 years, my intentions have never changed, because I fear for the Malays, especially after I have seen them become segmented and disunited.
“That is why if I just take a step back and don’t express myself, the future of the Malays appears bleak.
“That is why even at 95, I am still interested in carrying out my duties, and this is all by myself, no one asked to,” he added.