Dr M wants capable people, not party reps in Cabinet


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 26 Feb 2020

PETALING JAYA: Interim Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad says he wants a Cabinet comprising capable individuals that does not have to cleave to party affiliations.

In a televised address to the nation Wednesday (Feb 26), he also urged support for this proposal.

“Right or wrong, my opinion is that politics and party politics have to be put aside for the time being.

“If this is allowed, I will try to have an administration that does not side with any party, but only the national interest will be prioritised, ” he said.

Dr Mahathir, in explaining the reason behind his sudden resignation on Monday (Feb 24), said there had been allegations that with support for all sides, he could not decide who to pick or that he had no intention to relinquish his position as premier, on top of being power crazy.

"As such, I resigned, because I do not see power and post as my be-all and end-all goal. To me, the power and the position is a means to an end, or to reach an objective, which is for the benefit of the nation," said the 94-year-old.

He said that is why he relinquished his post after seeing the attitude of some politicians.

Dr Mahathir said he had promised before to give way to the next leader, but will leave that decision to the Dewan Rakyat to decide on his successor.

"If it is true that I do command the support (of the Dewan Rakyat), I will return. Or else, I will accept anyone who has been chosen.

"Hence, there is a chance for the change in leadership. In my opinion, I did not think it was time for me to resign as I believed that I was supported by both sides. That is why I asked for more time," he said.

However, Dr Mahathir said his party, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia's (Bersatu) had decided to quit Pakatan Harapan, together with some members of the Pakatan component parties.

Dr Mahathir said that should Bersatu support PAS and Umno, the parties that lost the support of the rakyat in the general election will be forming the government.

That government then will be dominated by Umno, he said.

"I am willing to accept Umno members who have come out of Umno and joined other parties. But I am not willing to accept Umno in this non-partisan government. Hence, I had to resign," said Dr Mahathir.

Dr Mahathir, who is Langkawi MP, also apologised to the rakyat.

"As a human being, I am no stranger to making mistakes. I apologise if my resignation is wrong.

"The Yang di-Pertuan Agong commanded I be appointed as the interim prime minister. I realise that what is being done now is also being rejected by many, but there are possibilities of some supporting it.

"I am not seeking to be liked by many, I am only doing something which I feel is good for the country," he said.

Dr Mahathir added that politicians and political parties are too obsessed with politics, that they have forgotten that the nation is being beleaguered by economic and health issues, referring to the current Covid-19 outbreak.

Special Address by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia on Feb 26,2020:

1. First of all, let me apologise to all Malaysians for the messy political situation of the country and which perhaps has caused unrest among all of you.

2. As the public knows, I have tendered my resignation letter as the seventh Prime Minister to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

3. However, I was granted an audience by Yang di-Pertuan Agong who, after a discussion of more than an hour, agreed to accept my resignation and after that ordered that I be the interim Prime Minister.

4. There are many reasons why I wanted to resign but it is enough to say that I felt that I had the support of all parties to the extent that I did not know which side to choose.

5. Apart from that, there were also allegations that I had intended never to let go of the position and was power-crazy.

6. Thus, I resigned because I did not want power and the position to be the “be all and end all” of my intentions. To me, power and position are “a means to an end” or an instrument to achieve an objective. And our objective is the good of the country.

7. Because of that, I decided to resign as I saw that for the politicians, what was most important is which party ruled, whether it won or lost.

8. Actually, I promised to resign to give the Dewan Rakyat an opportunity to decide who is to replace me. If it is true that I am supported, I will return. If not, I will accept anyone who is chosen.

9. The opportunity to change leadership is always there. Only I am of the opinion that since I was supported by both sides, the time has not come for me to step down.

10. I asked for more time, but my party Bersatu decided to leave the Pakatan Harapan coalition. There were also members from other component parties who left. With such actions, the Pakatan Harapan government collapsed.

11. The consequence was if Bersatu supported PAS and Umno, then the parties that lost (GE14) would be the one forming the government. The government will then be dominated by Umno as the biggest party.

12. I am prepared to accept Umno members who have left Umno and joined other parties. But Umno will be part of a unity government as Umno. This I could not accept. Thus, I had to resign.

13. As a normal human being, I am not safe from making mistakes. I apologise if my resignation was wrong.

14. Yang di-Pertuan Agong proclaimed that I be appointed the interim Prime Minister. I am aware that what I am doing now will be opposed and not accepted by many, but there may be those who will offer their support. I am not looking for popularity. I am only doing something that I think is good for the country.

15. Politicians and political parties prioritise politics too much until they forget about the country, which is facing economic and health problems.

16. I am of the opinion that whether it is right or not, politics and party politics have to be set aside for the time being. If I am allowed to, I will form a government that will not side with any party. Only the interest of the nation will be prioritised.

17. If I am given permission, this is what I will try.

18. I pray and ask for Allah SWT for guidance in this effort.

Thank you.

Original BM version:

1. Terlebih dahulu izinkan saya memohon maaf kepada semua rakyat Malaysia kerana keadaan politik Negara yang agak kucar-kacir dan mungkin menimbulkan keresahan dikalangan tuan-tuan dan puan-puan.

2. Seperti umum ketahui, saya telah menyerah surat peletakan jawatan sebagai Perdana Menteri ke-7 kepada Ke bawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Seri Paduka Baginda Yang diPertuan Agong.

3. Walaubagaimanapun, saya telah dipanggil mengadap Yang diPertuan Agong kemudiannya, dan setelah berbincang selama lebih satu jam, Tuanku telah bersetuju menerima surat peletakan jawatan saya dan setelah itu menitah saya supaya menjadi Perdana Menteri Interim.

4. Ada banyak sebab mengapa saya meletak jawatan tetapi cukuplah saya katakan bahawa saya merasa kononnya mendapat sokongan dari semua pihak sehingga saya tidak dapat memilih pihak mana yang saya pilih.

5. Selain itu, terdapat juga tuduhan bahawa saya tidak berniat untuk melepas jawatan dan gila kuasa.

6. Maka saya letak jawatan kerana saya tidak melihat kuasa dan jawatan itu sebagai “be all and end all” adalah matlamat saya. Bagi saya kuasa dan kedudukan itu adalah “a means to an end” ataupun satu alat untuk mencapai objektif. Dan objektif kita semua tentulah untuk kebaikan negara.

7. Kerana itu saya meletak jawatan kerana bagi saya ternampak bahawa bagi orang politik yang terpenting ialah parti mana yang memerintah, sama ada yang kalah atau yang menang.

8. Sebenarnya saya telah janji akan letak jawatan untuk memberi peluang kepada Dewan Rakyat menentukan siapa yang akan mengganti saya. Jika benarlah saya masih disokong saya akan kembali. Jika tidak saya akan terima siapa sahaja yang dipilih.

9. Jadi peluang untuk menukar kepimpinan memang ada. Hanya saya berpendapat oleh kerana saya disokong oleh kedua-dua pihak, masa untuk saya letak jawatan belum tiba.

10. Saya minta diberi masa. Tetapi parti saya BERSATU memutuskan untuk keluar dari Pakatan Harapan. Ada juga ahli dari parti komponen lain yang akan keluar. Dengan perlakuan ini Kerajaan Pakatan Harapan akan gugur.

11. Kesannya jika BERSATU sokong PAS dan UMNO maka parti-parti yang kalahlah yang akan diri Kerajaan. Kerajaan ini akan didominasi oleh UMNO sebagai parti yang terbesar.12. Saya sanggup terima ahli UMNO yang keluar UMNO dan menyertai parti lain. Tetapi UMNO akan sertai Kerajaan campuran ini sebagai Parti UMNO. Ini tidak dapat diterima oleh saya. Maka terpaksalah saya letak jawatan.

13. Sebagai manusia biasa saya tidak sunyi dari melaku kesilapan. Saya pohon maaf jika peletakan jawatan oleh saya adalah salah.

14. Yang diPertuan Agong bertitah supaya saya dilantik sebagai Perdana Menteri sementara. Saya sedar apa juga yang dilakukan oleh saya sekarang akan ditentang dan ditolak oleh ramai, tetapi mungkin ada yang menyokong. Saya tidak cari untuk disukai ramai. Saya hanyalah membuat sesuatu saya anggap baik bagi negara.

15. Politik, orang politik dan parti politik terlalu utama politik sehingga lupa negara menghadapi masalah ekonomi dan kesihatan yang mengancam negara.

16. Saya berpendapat betul atau tidak, politik dan parti politik perlu diketepikan buat masa sekarang. Jika dibenar saya akan cuba adakan pemerintahan yang tidak memihak kepada mana-mana parti. Hanya kepentingan negara sahaja yang akan diutamakan.

17. Jika diizin inilah yang akan saya cuba.

18. Saya berdoa dan saya pohon kepada Allah SWT saya diberi petunjuk dalam usaha ini.

Sekian, terima kasih.

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