“By throwing his weight behind Shafie, Mahathir has more or less put GPS and WARISAN into his pocket ahead of the 15thgeneral election and may even collect a few more Members of Parliament from Sarawak and Sabah along the way”
Raggie Jessy Rithaudeen
ايمڤين انور إبراهيم هنچور بركچاي دڠن ڤنچلونن شافعي اڤدل
Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan’s motion of confidence in the Prime Minister may be the cue to an early general election.
While a vote of confidence has no legal or constitutional bearing on the position of Prime Minister as opposed to a vote of no-confidence, it will serve to establish the support a Prime Minister has in parliament to some degree of accuracy.
Perikatan Nasional claims to possess a two seat majority against the opposition block.
However, this has yet to be tested and is open for debate given the contradictory remarks by several Members of Parliament, mainly from Sarawak, over their allegiance to the ruling coalition.
On the 7thof June 2020, I wrote:
Early in March 2020, GPS officially decided to join the Federal Government on condition that the administration was not seen to be a component of Perikatan Nasional, merely an affiliate member.
“This is because we are a separate political entity from PN (Perikatan Nasional) and we are not in PN.
“We have discussed this with the Prime Minister and he has agreed to the PN plus GPS formula,” GPS president Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg told reporters.
However, on the 18thof May 2020, GPS secretary-general Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi confirmed that the grouping was in fact part of Perikatan Nasional (PN).
The news came as a surprise to several Members of Parliament from component parties within GPS itself.
One MP who spoke to TTF on condition of anonymity said the decision by the “top brass” to draft a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), Barisan Nasional (BN), Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku (Star) and PAS was unilateral and without the consent of all Members of Parliament or even the leaderships of the various component parties.
For the record, GPS is made up of Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu(PBB), Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) and Progressive Democratic Party (PDP).
“PBB is a bully and does whatever it wants without proper consultation,” the MP said.
The biggest joke is that Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, PBB vice president, told media the same day that PN is currently a “loose coalition and not a political party.”
“We must understand that PN is not a registered political party but a loose coalition of political parties that are willing to work together and form the federal government.
“Yes, I agree that GPS is a member of that loose coalition,” he said.
The impression given was that GPS wanted Perikatan Nasional to know that “yes, we are with you, but only because it is expedient.”
Perhaps the message was also intended for the Mahathir camp by a slingshot. Perhaps it meant, “where is your proposal?”
So you see, there really is a huge question mark hovering over the allegiance of Sarawak Members of Parliament towards Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and Perikatan Nasional.
And today, Mahathir delivered a proposal to Abang Johari by nominating Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal as Prime Minister candidate, with the message, “I am open to a Borneo Prime Minister.”
This has more or less sealed Perikatan Nasional’s fate.
The message was also intended for Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, AMANAH and the DAP, who now understand that Mahathir meant business when he said “I cannot work with Anwar.”
By floating Shafie name, Mahathir let GPS know that he is not interested in entering a new transition agreement with Pakatan Harapan come hell or high water.
It is an open secret that both Shafie and Abang Johari hate Anwar’s guts like nobody’s business.
By throwing his weight behind Shafie, Mahathir has more or less put GPS and WARISAN into his pocket ahead of the 15thgeneral election and may even collect a few more Members of Parliament from Sarawak and Sabah along the way.
I’m told, the number may reach as high as 42.
As it is, Mahathir already enjoys the support of WARISAN en bloc and a majority from PPBM (government and opposition block), Team B (UMNO) and a number of MPs from PKR.
With DAP and AMANAH on board, should Takiyuddin – a member of government – go ahead and table a motion of confidence, Perikatan Nasional may get fried.
Unless, of course, Muhyiddin decides to call for the dissolution of Parliament ahead of the July sitting.