I was the man behind Bersatu, not Dr M, says Muhyiddin
(FMT) – Perikatan Nasional chairman Muhyiddin Yassin claims he, not Dr Mahathir Mohamad took the first step to form Bersatu. He said this was after he was sacked by former prime minister Najib Razak from Umno.
Muhyiddin said, as Najib’s deputy, he was compelled to speak up over the 1MDB issue at the time.
This eventually resulted in him being booted out by Najib, who was Umno president.
“The country’s situation was worsening with this issue of kleptocracy caused by the leaders of the nation then.
“Therefore, I, not Tun Mahathir took the step to form Bersatu because for our struggle or jihad to be effective, we could not be alone. It had to be with a strong group or political platform,” he said.
Mahathir was made Bersatu chairman while Muhyiddin was president when it was first formed.
Muhyiddin said the need for a strong platform was why Bersatu had been part of Pakatan Harapan (PH), the coalition which toppled Barisan Nasional after six decades in power at the 2018 general election.
However, he said he was unsettled when various demands were made on PH as to the way the country should have been run. He did not elaborate on the demands.
He claimed that PH’s direction was not in line with the struggle of Malays, Islam and Malaysians – and he told Mahathir that if Bersatu were to remain in the coalition, it would face dire consequences at the next general election.
Touching on Mahathir’s decision to resign as prime minister in February 2020, Muhyiddin said the nonagenarian refused to change his mind and stay on despite receiving the backing of “over 130 MPs, including those from Umno and PAS”.
“Tun refused to be PM, and when I put my name forward, he asked if I could gain enough support – and I said God willing,” said Muhyiddin.
“Umno leaders were among those who supported me … but because I was unwilling to sacrifice my principles and admit Umno members with court cases (into the government), I was eventually toppled by Umno.”