KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 3 — Some 40 Barisan Nasional (BN) MPs have signed statutory declarations (SD) to support Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as prime minister, said Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin.
The Star reported the Padang Besar MP as saying this afternoon that efforts are underway to convince one more MP to support the Perikatan Nasional (PN) administration.
“It would be great if the Umno president could support the government of the day.
“Our deputy prime minister is also from Umno, and that is why we should be in a pact,” Zahidi said during a press conference earlier today.
He, however, admitted that the only outlier was Gua Musang MP Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, fondly known as Ku Li, whom he said remains firm in refusing to support PN.
“We are still in the midst of negotiating. Ku Li is out, and we still have one more to go,” said the deputy communications and multimedia minister.
Zahidi, who is also an Umno Supreme Council member, added he will try to convince party president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to support PN, during the party’s Emergency Supreme Council meeting later today.
He said it is a no-brainer for BN to contest the next general election as the Opposition, as backbencher parties will always have the advantage.
“If Barisan wants to face the elections as the Opposition, this is a new experience and we are afraid to lose.
“It is better to face the elections as the government rather than the Opposition,” Zahidi was quoted as saying.
His comments today stand in contrast to those of Ahmad Zahid and BN Backbenchers’ Club chairman and Arau MP Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim, both who denied reports that 40 BN MPs had signed SDs during a late-night meeting with Muhyiddin at Wisma Perwira on Sunday.
On July 29, Ahmad Zahid told Umno MPs to withdraw their support for Muhyiddin as prime minister, following a rare rebuke by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to PN over the revocation of the Emergency Ordinances.