Probability of purging Dr M and his supporters from Bersatu very high, say analysts

  • Nation
  • Friday, 22 May 2020

PETALING JAYA: Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) would most likely see intensifying efforts to remove Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his supporters from the party, say several analysts.

According to Universiti Malaya's Prof Dr Awang Azman Awang Pawi, the probability of Dr Mahathir and his son Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir being eliminated before the party polls is very high.

"Because they are both deemed a threat to Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin's position and influence now. At least one of the two will be eliminated so that the party polls will be easier to win.

"If Dr Mahathir and Mukhriz win, or one of them wins, it will definitely (be a big blow) to Muhyiddin, who as the current Prime Minister, who would have been defeated and failed in dominating Bersatu.

"An internal crisis as such would cause a split in the party," he said.

At the same time, Azman said if Muhyiddin was victorious in the party polls, efforts to continue pressuring Dr Mahathir and his allies would likely to continue.

"As long as Muhyiddin is the prime minister, this will be supported by people around him in Bersatu."

Universiti Putra Malaysia political analyst Prof Dr Jayum Jawan said now that the chairman position is left vacant, with the Registrar of Societies (ROS) having confirmed Dr Mahathir’s initial resignation,"it is clear that the president has won the internal party battle."

"The party will consolidate under the president. But the issue that may haunt the party is, what will be the status of the former chairman who has won the chairmanship unopposed?" he said, adding that Dr Mahathir's membership in the party is also in question.

Dr Jeniri Amir, a political analyst from Sarawak, said Muhyiddin would be more dominant in Bersatu following the ROS announcement that Dr Mahathir is no longer the party chairman.

"Internally, it should be more stable for Muhyiddin as long as no lawmakers or leaders jump to Dr Mahathir's camp," he said, adding that it could also mean that Dr Mahathir is no longer eligible to stand in the upcoming party polls.

Dr Mahathir claimed that Muhyiddin's Perikatan Nasional coalition only holds a two-seat majority in the 222-seat Dewan Rakyat, adding that it was the narrowest majority any government in Malaysia has ever had.

He had also said that he would seek to oust Muhyiddin as prime minister at every turn.

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