PETALING JAYA: Jerlun MP Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir believes that Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim should remain at the helm of the country’s Opposition — so that the embattled Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalition will continue to crumble.
"I would prefer to see Anwar remaining there as the Opposition leader," Mukhriz told The Malay Mail last night in a phone interview.
"It will be good for Barisan Nasional because he has dragged PR down, and many of his men have lost faith in him."
With Bagan Serai MP Mohsin Fadzli Samsuri’s exit yesterday — the third legislator from PKR to resign in the space of a month — PKR's majority in Parliament has been slashed from 31 to 28 seats.
Its PR partners DAP and PAS have 28 and 23 MPs respectively.
Speculation has been rife that Anwar will be asked to resign as the Opposition leader if there are more departures from PKR parliamentarians.
However, DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang has backed Anwar as the de facto PR leader.
He had said the DAP will continue to endorse Anwar to be the prime minister should PR take control of the Federal government.
PAS also showed its unwavering support for Anwar. Yesterday, its 23 MPs and three senators issued a joint statement in which, among others, they pledged their full support for Anwar’s leadership and his role as the Opposition leader.
"I don’t think Anwar is the sort of character that should be made PM," said Mukhriz, son of Malaysia’s longest-serving PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
"I won’t be choosing him if I were them. They have made a mistake.
"Anwar’s party PKR appears to have lost its direction already. It seems like PKR’s only agenda is to make Anwar the PM. I don’t see what’s so good about having him as PM.
"The people now don’t really know what PR stands for anymore. But if PR wants it that way, then so be it. It will only reflect how badly they are at selecting their men. One day, whatever misfortune Anwar suffers, will befall PR too."
Former PKR secretary-general Datuk Salehuddin Hashim, who announced his resignation from the party, together with Nibong Tebal MP Tan Tee Beng, has speculated that 10 more PKR MPs will quit the party.
However, 12 PKR MPs yesterday — among them those speculated to be among Salehuddin’s Kumpulan 10 — pledged their loyalty to the party in the presence of the Press at their headquarters.
PKR leaders such as information chief Tian Chua and PKR supreme council member Datuk Zaid Ibrahim had described the departures as good riddance and merely a "fat-trimming exercise". - Malay mail