An officer from the Prime Minister’s Office today denied that Dr Mahathir Mohamad would immediately announce his resignation as stated in a message being circulated on social media.
This comes after Pakatan Harapan’s recent defeat in the Tanjung Piai by-election, following which Mahathir’s detractors said the loss served as a referendum to his leadership.
“Yes, it is fake,” the officer told Malaysiakini.
The officer was rebutting a message purportedly stating that media outlets were instructed not to provide any access to Mahathir as he planned to announce his resignation.
“Yet to reconfirm but news agencies instructed not to allow Tun M access to any form of live interview or broadcast to prevent him from saying unsavoury matters, including throwing in an immediate resignation without any appointed successor.
“Tun M had flown off to overseas an hour ago.. reconfirming news now.. Tomorrow, a referendum will be discussed at Harapan Council without Tun M,” read the message that went viral on the social media today.
The officer said Mahathir attended a meeting on Malaysia Agreement 1963 at the Prime Minister’s Office this morning.
“He’s not overseas,” said the officer, adding the prime minister is working as usual.
In the Tanjung Piai by-election last Saturday, BN’s Wee Jeck Seng won by a whopping 15,086-vote majority by garnering 25,466 votes against Harapan candidate Karmaine Sardini’s 10,380 votes.
PKR president Anwar Ibrahim said BN’s overwhelming majority in the poll came as a shock.
“The majority obtained by the opposition is a shock and also a message to the entire Pakatan Harapan leadership. We must learn from the by-election results,” said Anwar
Former PKR deputy president Syed Husin Ali suggested that Mahathir should step down following the electoral debacle. -mkini
Dr M says thought Pakatan would only lose Tanjung Piai by 2,000 votes
KUALA LUMPUR — Pakatan Harapan chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he had predicted the ruling coalition would lose the Tanjung Piai by-election.
However, he said he did not anticipate the margin of defeat PH eventually suffered in the Johor federal constituency.
“I expected the margin of defeat to be no more than 2,000 votes. However, the official majority was 15,086 votes,” he said in a statement.
Barisan Nasional’s Datuk Seri Wee Jeck Seng took 25,466 votes versus the 10,380 secured by PH’s Karmaine Sardini from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, giving the former ruling coalition its most resounding victory since its unexpected general election loss last year.
The victory was also the first for the nascent Muafakat Nasional that effectively joined BN to Islamist party PAS.
– MALAY MAIL
-MKINI / MALAY MAIL