KUALA LUMPUR: Perkasa president Datuk Ibrahim Ali says he holds no ill feelings towards Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and will always respect him as a statesman.
This was despite the former premier saying that he was embarrassed to be friends with Ibrahim.
"I still consider Dr Mahathir a friend and will continue to respect him even though his words have insulted me greatly," he told reporters at the Perkasa headquarters on Wednesday.
The former Pasir Mas MP said he had feelings and self-respect too, and felt that it was necessary to clarify some things that Dr Mahathir had said about him.
He said that although he has tremendous respect for Dr Mahathir, it did not mean that he would blindly agree to the policies that the latter promoted.
Dr Mahathir had on Tuesday accused Ibrahim of not wanting to join Pribumi because the party worked with DAP.
"I cannot accept any cooperation with DAP. This has been my stand for eight years in Perkasa," Ibrahim said.
He also expressed shock at the former prime minister for working with DAP now when he fiercely criticised the Opposition party previously.
Ibrahim said that he could not get on board a "ship that was going to sink because it did not like the captain of a rival ship".
"This ship is one that I consider to be 'musuh dalam selimut' (wolf in sheep's clothing)," he said, referring to the cooperation between Pribumi and the other opposition parties.
Ibrahim maintained that he would contest as an independent in the 14th general election, hinting that he could run in his former Pasir Mas constituency or elsewhere in Kelantan.
He also said that he planned to mobilise as many candidates as possible to contest as independents in the next general election.
"We need more independents in Parliament, who will speak up according to their conscience and not toe their party line.
"Of course, they will then accuse me of trying to help Barisan Nasional win, but I don't care about them," he added.
Dr Mahathir had on Tuesday warned Ibrahim not to "break us up" by causing three or four-cornered fights in the next election.