PETALING JAYA: Pakatan Harapan (PH) Presidential Council has unanimously named PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as its prime minister candidate, following the resignation of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Monday.
Anwar said the Council had, on Tuesday (yesterday), invited Dr Mahathir to chair its meeting to restore PH government, however, the former prime minister declined to attend the meeting.
“Therefore, the PH Presidential Council in its meeting yesterday has decided to nominate me as PH prime minister candidate,” he said in a news conference here today.
Besides stepping down as the 7th prime minister, Dr Mahathir also announced his resignation as Bersatu chairman on the same day.
The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah had, later in the day, consented to the appointment of Dr Mahathir as interim prime minister.
His Majesty also consented to grant personal audiences to all 222 members of parliament to resolve the country’s political turmoil triggered by the resignation of Dr Mahathir.
The political turmoil sees Bersatu which has 26 MPs left the coalition while PKR lost 11 seats after nine of its MPs quit the party following the sacking of its deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali and vice-president Zuraida Kamaruddin.
This has led the PH government to lose its majority in the Parliament after it was left with only 92 MPs, short of 20 seats for a simple majority to form a government.
Asked on the total numbers of MPs supported PH so far, Anwar said it was impolite and improper to discuss the matter.
“We leave it to the discretion of Agong … not right to discuss that matter… We have all been invited to meet Agong. Now all actions must stop and we must wait for Agong’s decision. (The decision) Must be respected by all,” he said.
Anwar said PH remains committed to improving the country in all aspects.
“We will not betray the people’s mandate,” he added.
Anwar, however, refused to comment on Dr Mahathir’s proposal to establish a non-partisan government.