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KUALA LUMPUR, March 4 — Bersatu has acknowledged Umno’s intention to not cooperate for the 15th general election, saying it will press ahead with the other components of the ruling Perikatan Nasional coalition.
Bersatu secretary-general Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin reiterated, however, that the party considered Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s administration to be intact and functioning despite the development.
In a statement issued after this evening’s Bersatu supreme council meeting, Hamzah said the party viewed Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s letter announcing the severance seriously due to its implication to the ruling coalition.
“In this matter, Bersatu has decided to keep focusing on developing the cooperation with allies in Perikatan Nasional, which are PAS, STAR, SAPP and Gerakan, based on a struggle that is sincere and honest for the people in order to win the coming general election,” he said.
It was previously reported that Zahid wrote to Bersatu on February 26 to confirm that his party would not maintain their political cooperation for GE15.
Umno secretary-general Datuk Ahmad Maslan authenticated the letter today and confirmed the party’s intention.
The Malay nationalist party had only been expected to deliberate the matter in its delayed general assembly later this month but Zahid’s letter has preempted this.
Umno worked with Bersatu after it withdrew from the Pakatan Harapan coalition last year, jointly forming the PN administration with PAS and several former Barisan Nasional components.
Shortly after, however, Umno returned to treating Bersatu as a political rival and eventually refused to formally enter PN.