PERIKATAN Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has rubbished claims that Bersatu would not have been in turmoil had he assumed the role of the opposition leader, a position currently held by Bersatu secretary-general Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin.
The Bersatu president reportedly said he did not want to “monopolise everything” and that he was training Hamzah to lead the coalition, especially in the Parliament as the 66-year-old is “younger” and considered a “fresh face”.
“I thought that since I was once the leader of the government, the opportunity of opposition leader should be given to Hamzah as the PN and Bersatu secretary-general,” the Pagoh MP told Free Malaysia Today.
“I don’t want to monopolise everything. I am known as a former prime minister, so parliamentary duties should be given to a younger person.”
Muhyiddin’s comment came after criticisms by UMNO veteran Tan Sri Shahrir Samad who said Bersatu would not have been in turmoil had the former prime minister assumed the role of opposition leader instead.
Shahrir’s comment was made in response to the decision by four Bersatu MPs to declare their support for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s unity government.
According to Muhyiddin, he had offered the opposition leader position to PN ally PAS as the Islamist party holds the highest number of MPS in the coalition (43) but it had declined the post.
He reportedly said he had told PAS president Tan Sri Abdul Hadi Awang to nominate a candidate, but PAS declined.
Muhyiddin also said although he thought that Hamzah was performing well in his role, there was still room for improvement. “It’s because he’s new,” he reckoned. – Nov 20, 2023