A week of turmoil in Malaysia and it is a week where Mahathir went viral for all the wrong reasons.
It all started with the much-expected Pakatan Harapan Presidential Council meeting last Friday.
Then PM Mahathir Mohamad and his colleagues in the PH met for a discussion on his tenure.
It all started well until the ex-PKR group headed by Azmin Ali proposed that Mahathir stays on as PM.
Their views were that Dr M should remain as PM until the next general elections. They are clearly against Anwar Ibrahim, their party leader.
This is then seen as a betrayal by PKR members against Anwar to whom Mahathir promised the PM post.
REFUSAL TO QUIT
With Azmin’s proposal on the table, the meeting became heated with a large majority of PH members against it.
But the PH leaders did not budge. They pressed Mahathir to accept a date for his resignation as PM. This will be the date when Anwar Ibrahim takes over.
A large majority of the PH, who is still with Anwar today, voted for this option. They quashed Azmin’s move.
A source now tells WFTV Mahathir became unsettled. He showed a quality that has been hidden since he was PM the last time in 2003. That is he became adamant, showing clearly he is not quitting.
But it was game over for Mahathir. The majority of the PH wants him out by May. He became recalcitrant, says the source, and Anwar intervened.
But prior to Anwar’s intervention, the newly-minted PM candidate Muhyiddin Yassin had proposed that Anwar and Mahathir deal with the exit date alone.
He suggested the PH Council would have nothing to do with it. Only Anwar and Mahathir would discuss it and get back to them.
This was not accepted altogether. The entire PH wanted to find out what is Mahathir’s plans for his resignation.
Seeing that he is a minority in the PH Council and that most of the PH members were against him, he listened to Anwar.
Anwar had said to Mahathir he is okay if the latter would stay on until the Apec meeting in November.
This got the PH Council Members of their toes, arguing that it is not what was agreed in January 2018.
To recall, Mahathir had said in media conferences and Pakatan Harapan, as well as Bersatu, rallies that he will quit to let Anwar take over.
Pakatan Harapan is the coalition that Mahathir built with Anwar to defeat the Barisan Nasional in 2018. Bersatu is the party Mahathir created after he exited the Umno, which was the ruling party in Malaysia.
He had said the agreed to the terms imposed by the PH that is he is PM first and then he relinquishes the post to Anwar.
Some reports also say he agreed he will be PM for six months to one year only. This changed to 2 years later on and it became indefinite afterwards.
THE APEC DEADLINE
The source also tells WFTV Anwar set the Apec meeting in Malaysia as the final deadline. Mahathir was not happy, he showed it when he spoke in a rogue manner to the Council.
“He became brutal, nasty, showing he is not quitting that easily,” says the source.
“It is the Apec deadline, that is nine months from now, that got Mahathir running,” says the source.
The Bersatu and Mahathir could not accept that the elderly leader had only nine more months to rule.
After that, he will be removed if he does not comply with the PH Council’s decision to put Anwar as the next PM.
This led to the grouping behind him in the PH to organise plans for a backdoor government. Their aim was to grab power and cause a collapse of the PH regime.
Mahathir confirmed this, and his knowledge of the machinations during his infamous speech on Wednesday.
After his resignation, he was appointed the ‘interim PM’ and this shocked Malaysians.
His resignation was a bluff and a ploy to reject all the promises he had made with the PH, says the source.
Since then, it is only the tumble down the road and out of the PM race for Mahathir.