KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) agrees with a proposal by an Umno supreme council member that Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi deserves to be named deputy prime minister in the unity government.
Its information chief Datuk Fredie Sua said the post should be given to Ahmad Zahid as Barisan was a main partner in the government led by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Supporting an earlier suggestion made by Umno supreme council member Datuk Mohd Razlan Rafii on Saturday (Nov 26), Sua said PBRS was of the opinion that all appointments in Anwar’s administration should be based on seniority and through negotiations that enabled the formation of the new Malaysian government.
"As the Barisan chairman and main partner in the unity government, we believe and have full confidence that Ahmad Zahid not only qualifies (to be the DPM) but also has vast experience in administering the country," he said, in a statement here on Saturday (Nov 26).
On Ahmad Zahid’s pending court case, Sua said, as the public was aware, legal cases against politicians were among the challenges that needed to be addressed, adding he was confident the court process will be implemented fairly.
"As long as the court process is not over, Ahmad Zahid, the Bagan Dato MP, has not been convicted of any wrongdoing and has the right to be appointed as the deputy prime minister based on his position as Barisan's chairman and Umno president," he said.
Mohd Razlan had earlier said Ahmad Zahid was the best candidate for the post, adding this was based on hierarchy and party’s decision.
Ahmad Zahid was freed by the Shah Alam High Court of all 40 graft charges in the Foreign Visa System (VLN) case last September.
High Court judge Justice Mohd Yazid Mustafa held that the prosecution had not succeeded in establishing a case against him.
The Court of Appeal has fixed Jan 10 for another case management of the prosecution’s appeal against the decision to acquit Ahmad Zahid.
Ahmad Zahid, however, was still facing 47 other charges in the Yayasan Akalbudi (YAB) case – 12 for criminal breach of trust, eight for corruption and 27 for money laundering – involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to YAB.
The trial has been postponed to January.