Malaysia’s Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad once again reiterated his wish to leave his post after November 2020 to hand over power to Anwar Ibrahim.
The elderly statesman made it a bit less cryptic this time. But it is the first time he has set a month as an indication of his intention to quit in respect of a deal made with Anwar.
“I made a promise to hand over and I will, accepting that I thought that a change immediately before the Apec summit would be disruptive.”
Many observers do not understand why his resignation before the Apec will be disruptive.
Before that, Dr Mahathir was as evasive as possible, rejecting the formulation of a particular date for his resignation saying it will make him a ‘lame duck’ PM.
Nevertheless, he also said, “As far I’m concerned, I’m stepping down and I’m handing the baton to him. If people don’t want him, that is their business, but I will do my part of the promise… irrespective of whatever allegation. I made my promise, I keep my promise.”
He was speaking about the third sodomy allegation against Anwar Ibrahim in 20 years.
A man claimed he was molested and abused by Anwar in the latter’s home in Kuala Lumpur but Anwar rejects the claims.
Anwar’s party described the accusations as “politics at its worst” or ‘gutter politics.’
The future PM said he had a very busy schedule on that day and was campaigning in Port Dickson for his election to Parliament.
The Police have taken a statement from the man, Yusuf Rawther, who also handed them a statutory declaration.
In an interview with Reuters, Dr Mahathir said he may not be ready to quit before the Apec summit. But he later on said he might be ready after that.
Reuters had asked him if the handover could come in December 2020. He replied, “We’ll look at that when the time comes.” -/TISG