Dr Mahathir Mohamad has downplayed the prospect of becoming prime minister for a second time after having occupied the post for more than two decades until 2003.
“If people are desperate and cannot find anybody else (for the post), then maybe this 92-year-old can become a candidate,” he said.
Mahathir, who is the chairperson of Pakatan Harapan, said the coalition did not make a final decision on this issue during the opposition coalition’s pre-general election retreat two weeks ago.
“They have not nominated me yet and there was no decision made during the retreat,” he told reporters at the PKR headquarters in Petaling Jaya this afternoon.
Following the Dec 1-2 retreat, reports surfaced that a decision was made to appoint Mahathir as prime minister and PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail as his deputy if Harapan wins the national polls.
However, DAP has insisted that jailed opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim is its choice of prime minister.
During the retreat, Harapan also discussed its next course of action for Bersatu amid risks of the party being deregistered for failing to hold its annual general assembly.
PKR whip Johari Abdul said there were also proposals that Harapan component parties contest under a single logo if the coalition unable to register as a formal coalition.
Harapan leaders, including PKR President Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Bersatu President Muhyiddin Yassin, DAP Deputy President Gobind Singh Deo and Amanah President Mohamad Sabu declined to speak on having an interim premier and a single logo.
Meanwhile, Mahathir said he had spoken with US-based human right lawyer Kimberly Motley who arrived at Malaysia yesterday to press the government to release her client, former opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim.
“I saw her, I agreed with her and I support her,” said Mahathir curtly.
Harapan chief secretary Saifuddin Abdullah said the coalition will issue a statement on the matter.
Motley had planned to meet both Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.