PRIME Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad scoffed at allegations the uncertainty surrounding the handover of power to Anwar Ibrahim was the reason Pakatan Harapan was crushed in the Tanjung Piai by-election last Saturday.
Dr Mahathir said no one can be sure about the matter and if it was the reason for the political drubbing.
“Maybe it is my fault, how do I know? We do not know if the country is ready to accept (power transition). When the time comes we will decide,” he said after closing the 2019 Southeast Asia Ulama Multaqa in Sepang.
Since BN’s thumping of PH in Saturday’s Tanjung Piai by-election, pressure is increasing on Dr Mahathir to quit his post, with political observers blaming the 94-year-old coalition chairman for the pact’s humiliating defeat.
Immediately after MCA man Wee Jeck Seng was declared the winner with a 15,086-vote majority, veteran PKR politician Syed Husin Ali tweeted that Dr Mahathir “knows what should be done”.
The long-time critic of the prime minister also reiterated that there should be no more delays in handing over the top job to PKR president Anwar Ibrahim.
“The result is clear. The people are disappointed and want to teach PH, especially Dr Mahathir (a lesson). He knows what should be done and there should be no more delays.”
Bersatu candidate Karmaine Sardini had represented PH in Tg Piai in a six-way race.
He lost to Wee from MCA by a 15,000-vote margin.
ee polled 25,466 votes to the 10,380 obtained by Karmaine.
Voter turnout was about 74%, and the poll saw many Chinese voters who supported PH last year turn their backs on the coalition in this by-election.
Just a few days after the defeat, Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali met 22 BN MPs at his official residence in Putrajaya last night.
It was believed the meeting was to discuss how to prevent Anwar from replacing Mahathir after calls for the 94-year-old to step down gained momentum.
However, Azmin has denied this, saying the meeting was to discuss matters of national interest.
Azmin also said he was meeting PKR lawmakers in his parliamentary office this afternoon, while Anwar told reporters he was not invited.
Mahathir also responded to the matter this morning saying he heard of the closed-door discussion but was not informed of the details.
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT