JELEBU, Jan 7 — The choice of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as prime minister by the opposition pact if it wins the upcoming general election will only trigger political instability, said Barisan Nasional (BN) Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin.
He said this was because of uncertainty in how long the the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) chairman would hold the post as there had been talks that his appointment would only be temporary.
“There is an attempt by the opposition to seek a royal pardon for Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) de-facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (who is serving his prison sentence) to be released as soon as possible to take over as the prime minister.
“I just heard that they (the opposition pact) have announced their prime minister candidate, and as expected, the person is Tun Mahathir, with Datin Seri Wan Azizah (Wan Ismail) as the deputy prime minister.
“This will create a state of upheaval in the party, and it will also create uncertainty among investors, not knowing how long Tun M is prime minister before Anwar takes over,” he told reporters after launching the BN election machinery for Jelebu parliamentary constituency here.
Also present were Jelebu BN chairman Datuk Jalaluddin Alias, its deputy chairman Baharudin Jali and 6,000 BN members.
Earlier in his speech, Khairy who is also Umno Youth chief, said most investors chose to invest in Malaysia because of the country’s political stability under the BN administration as they did not have to worry about coup attempts and chaos.
“If we were to look back at events in 1998, there was an upheaval in the country following the sacking of Anwar (then the deputy prime minister) by Dr Mahathir who was the prime minister.
“Today they may be friends because they have a common enemy... but the 1998 unrest cannot simply be forgotten. Do you think Dr Mahathir will hand over the prime minister’s post easily after six months or a year (of holding the post)... and will Anwar wait patiently to take over as prime minister?,” he asked.
Khairy who is also Youth and Sports Minister, said the opposition’s promises to provide free toll and education were only sweet talks as their implementation would cause the country to go bankrupt.
“If the opposition takes over the country and provides everything for free, the country’s economy will collapse,” he said adding that during BN rule the government never gave the people empty promises or false hopes. — Bernama