Opposition leaders say open to working with sacked Umno duo

Muhyiddin Mukhriz

(MMO) – Pakatan Harapan leaders have expressed willingness to receive Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir who were expelled by Umno for sharing a stage with the opposition.

The leaders polled by Malay Mail Online stopped short of saying they would openly court the duo but said they had no qualms accepting them into their respective parties if they were willing to subscribe to Pakatan Harapan’s agenda.

Parti Amanah Negara president Mohamad Sabu said his party was ready to work with anyone, whether Muhyiddin or Mukhriz or any leader that opposes Barisan Nasional (BN) and Umno.

“Ya, we will work with any party, any NGO going to fight against BN and Umno,” he told Malay Mail Online when contacted.

Mohamad confirmed that Amanah had no plans to extend membership invitations to either Muhyiddin or Mukhriz and said that if the duo wished, however, its central committee would first have to discuss whether to accept their bids.

“But for me, no problem to accept,” he said.

He also described the two ex-Umno leaders and Mukhriz’s father, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, as “veteran politicians” who always knew the best political moves to make and parties to choose for themselves.

Last month, Muhyiddin and Mukhriz told a press conference they would look for a new political “platform” to pursue their cause.

The two men would not say, however, if this meant they would form a new party or team up with the opposition.

Amanah communications director Khalid Samad, however, said it was not likely that the sacked duo would want to join Amanah due to differences in political objectives.

“Well I think they have their own agenda and their agenda as proclaimed by them is in order to save Umno from Najib leadership.

“And I don’t think that agenda fits in with Amanah’s agenda but we will be willing to work together with them,” he said.

Khalid added that Muhyiddin and Mukhriz would first have to accept Amanah’s struggles if they wanted to be members, pointing out that apart from seeking Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s removal, the party also hopes to see the current BN administration replaced with Pakatan Harapan.

“If they form their own NGO or political party, of course areas in which we would like to work with them is accountability and transparency, to increase level of political consciousness and understanding within the Malay community in particular so they don’t become too beholden to current leadership and they understand it’s ok if they change government if the government doesn’t perform,” he said.

PKR vice-president Chua Tian Chang similarly expressed willingness to work with Mukhriz and Muhyiddin, but downplayed the importance of having the duo join PKR or any party in Pakatan Harapan.

“I think the key issue is how we want to save this country. I think the key issue is not which party is going to gain from their exit and gain members, that is secondary,” he told Malay Mail Online yesterday.

“It would be pointless for the duo to join opposition parties if their membership does not “translate into real work on the ground”, Chua said.