Mahathir has no choice but to appoint Anwar the Acting PM
To serve the nation we sometimes need to do what we do not like. And in this case, like it or not, Mahathir may need to eat humble pie and appoint Anwar the Acting Prime Minister in case he does not come home from the hospital.
THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
What Perlis Mufti Assoc. Prof. Dato’ Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin a.k.a. MAZA said in his open letter to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is true (READ HERE: YAB TUN, PANDANGLAH REDHA ALLAH DALAM MENCARI PENGGANTI).
Of course, MAZA is looking at this entire thing from the aspect of Mahathir’s Islamic duty — and I do not blame him since he is a “man of the cloth”. If you know the history of the succession to Prophet Muhammad (successors are called caliph), you would know that this is a very dicey matter that cannot be treated lightly. I mean, today, the Muslims are badly divided (even in Malaysia) and are killing each other (not yet in Malaysia) because of the issue of the succession to Prophet Muhammad.
In fact, historians say the beginning of the decline of the Islamic Empire started during the time of the Third Caliph, Uthman ibn Affan, and that Ali ibn Abi Talib, the Fourth Caliph, should have been appointed the Third Caliph instead of Uthman. It was during Uthman’s rule that corruption, nepotism and cronyism were rife.
Mahathir needs heart surgery if he wants to be around to celebrate New Year 2020
No doubt, some would dispute this interpretation of history, as they would dispute historians who say that Chin Peng was a patriot and the Communist Terrorists who murdered so many Malayans were freedom fighters. But then there are always two sides to history, such as whether it was the Indian Mutiny or the Indian fight for independence.
Putting aside the history of the succession and the Muslim split that resulted from it, Mahathir needs to put aside his personal and family interests in his own succession plan. There are some hard facts Mahathir needs to face and which he cannot avoid.
Mahathir is not only old but he is also not in the best of health. Months ago, the doctors had advised him to get off the merry-go-round and that he needs heart surgery. If by the end of this year he is still stubborn, he might not be around to celebrate New Year 2020. That is how critical the situation is.
Mahathir cannot take the risk of dying without an Acting Prime Minister running the country
Then, after the surgery, he needs to rest and recover and that will require him taking six months off. He cannot take just 59 days leave. If has to be more than 60 days. And since it is more than 60 days that will require him appointing an Acting Prime Minister to run the country in his absence.
Mahathir has two choices for Acting Prime Minister, either Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail or Anwar Ibrahim — Wan Azizah because she is the Deputy Prime Minister and Anwar because he is Prime Minister-in-waiting or the man Mahathir promised will take over as PM8.
There are no two ways about it. Mahathir has to appoint an Acting Prime Minister, most likely by December or so when he goes under the knife. Mahathir cannot take the risk of dying on the operating table without an Acting Prime Minister in charge of the country. And it has to be either Wan Azizah or Anwar — and most likely Anwar since he has been anointed as the successor.
To not do this would be a very irresponsible act on the part of Mahathir. This is not about who/what you like or do not like. This is about the country. The country must come first and your personal feelings or likes and dislikes must take a back seat.
To serve the nation we sometimes need to do what we do not like. And in this case, like it or not, Mahathir may need to eat humble pie and appoint Anwar as the Acting Prime Minister in case he does not come home from the hospital.