KUALA LUMPUR: Barisan Nasional's loss of support from former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will have little impact on the coalition's performance in the next general election.
Barisan Nasional Back Benchers Club (BNBBC) chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Samad (pix) said previous election performances by Barisan had shown that Dr Mahathir's support or lack of it did not do much on the coalition's standing.
"When he was against Pak Lah (former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi), he campaigned against us in 2008.
"In 2013, he campaigned for us, however, we still lost by a reduced margin. These are the facts, so do you think he (Dr Mahathir) is still relevant?" he told a press conference in Parliament on Tuesday.
Shahrir was asked to comment on the likelihood of Barisan seeing a reduced support in the 14th general election following the mounting criticism by Dr Mahathir.
He cited the example of the 1997 crisis which split Umno, leading to the formation of a splinter party, Semangat 46.
"Parti Bersatu Sabah even left the coalition. However, we went to the polls and managed to pull through," he said.
On a separate issue, Shahrir acknowledged Dr Mahathir's observation that any move to topple the government through a motion of no confidence in Parliament would not succeed.
"It is a wise statement by Tun Mahathir," he added.
In his blog, Dr Mahathir said there would be insufficient numbers from Barisan lawmakers to support the motion as "they are beholden to Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak".
Did you find this article insightful?