‘Position may be abolished’

  • Nation
  • Friday, 22 May 2020

PETALING JAYA: Top leaders in Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia are considering doing away with the chairman position in an effort to prevent a further split within the party.

According to a source familiar with the discussions, it came about following the recent infighting involving Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

“Now you have two figures laying claim to the top position in the party. It’s as though you are the captain of the ship, and then there’s another captain as well.

“There is an overlapping chain of command. It would be much more productive if the chairman position was abolished.

“The president should be the highest position in the party,” said the source.

To abolish the chairman’s position would require an emergency meeting to be called as the party’s constitution needed to be amended.

“They would have to sit down and discuss this,” said the source.

At the same time, the source also hinted that Dr Mahathir and his supporters might be purged from Bersatu soon.

“There is a provision in the Constitution to sack members who go against the party,” the source added.

It was unsure which provisions were being referred to as the Bersatu constitution is not publicly available.

Recently, the RoS announced that Dr Mahathir was no longer the chairman as his resignation as party chairman on Feb 24 went into effect immediately.

Muhyiddin, as the current party president, will be the acting chairman until the next Bersatu polls.

However, Dr Mahathir disputed the RoS’ announcement, saying that he was still Bersatu chairman and the RoS might not have taken into account several factors over his “resignation” and Muhyiddin’s appointment as acting chairperson.

Dr Mahathir also wanted the RoS to probe and resolve the termination of Datuk Marzuki Yahya as party secretary-general and Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin’s appointment as his replacement, which was allegedly made “without consultation with the Bersatu chairperson”.

Exchanges between the two factions had intensified in recent days with Dr Mahathir submitting to the Dewan Rakyat Speaker on May 4 a no-confidence motion against Muhyiddin.

Speaker Tan Sri Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof on May 8 said the motion had been accepted.

Less than 10 days later, Dr Mahathir’s son Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir lost his grip on the Kedah Mentri Besar position after the Pakatan Harapan state government fell following the resignation of two PKR elected representatives from the party.

The two, Azman Nasrudin (Lunas) and Dr Robert Ling Kui Ee (Sidam), are aligned to former PKR deputy president Datuk Seri Azmin Ali.

They said they had lost confidence in the party.

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