Mahathir Mohamad, the fourth Malaysian prime minister, held office from 1981 to 2003
The People’s Justice Party (PKR) political bureau has decided former prime minister Dr Mahathir bin Mohamad will be heading the Pakatan Harapan (PH) pro tem committee in Malaysia.
The decision was finalised at the PKR political bureau meeting on Wednesday night after weeks of doubt and indecision, reports The Malaysian Insight.
According to a PKR political bureau source, the party agreed upon Dr Mahathir leading the coalition as they believe it will enhance their prospects of capturing Putrajaya in the next elections.
The party’s source said: “The political bureau agreed to have Dr Mahathir as PH chairman while Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail will be the president.”
“We agreed for Dr Mahathir to lead the coalition as we believe he can help capture the Malay votes which have been monopolised by Umno all this while,” the PKR source said.
PKR’s de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim will be PH adviser, the source added.
Anwar agreed to allow PKR’s political bureau decide on the amended PH list of office-bearers.
Malaysia’s former opposition leader Anwar decided to allow his party make the final call after a meeting with Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and his deputy, Husam Musa, at the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya on Tuesday.
PH’s list of presidential council members became a cause of contention, delaying the opposition’s registration with the Registrar of Societies.
The four-party coalition was in doubt while finalising whether Dr Wan Azizah or Dr Mahathir would be the chairman. So the party took time to make a final decision.
The party was supposed to announce leadership line-up plans on last Friday after the PH presidential council meeting. However, the announcement of the plans were postponed because PKR could not agree with the new party structure.
Therefore, the party said they will announce the leadership line-up after a meeting which will be held on Friday, June 16.
Under the new structure, Anwar would be adviser while Dr Mahathir would be chairman, leaving Dr Wan Azizah as president.
However, Anwar wanted Dr Wan Azizah to be the chairman while he and Dr Mahathir to be the advisers.
In addition, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin and PKR deputy president Mohamed Azmin Ali will be PH deputy presidents.
The PKR source said: “After this, PKR will discuss the decision with the other opposition component parties to obtain their approval.
“Bersatu has already agreed,” the PKR source added.