Mahathir: PH had trouble 'from within' when taking over government
PETALING JAYA: The Pakatan Harapan coalition encountered difficulties "from within" when it was taking over the government, said Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad.
In a interview with regional magazine Mekong Review, Dr Mahathir said there were some Malay-Muslim leaders within the coalition who were being persuaded to form a government with Umno and Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS).
"There was a fear that our coalition was not going to respect the position of Islam as much as the previous government had.
"So there was an idea that if the Muslims all came together - the new opposition were largely Muslim, with Umno and PAS - they could drag other Muslims (from our coalition), have the majority and form a Malay-Muslim government, but they were advised against that," said Dr Mahathir.
He declined to name those who were approached.
The talks and political manoeuvring were behind the delay in the announcement of the coalition's victory on May 9, he added.
"We knew we had won by 8.30pm, but we didn't get the official announcement until about 2am, because during that short period of time, there was a lot of manoeuvring, which was not visible to the people," he told Mekong Review.
While the transition in changing government appear to be smooth from the outside, he added, it was not so internally.
"We had lots of difficulties, including attempts from within to reject our success, but in the end, better sense prevailed," he was quoted as saying. - THE STAR