Learn from UMNO’s mistakes, Mahathir tells party members


SHAH ALAM: Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the chairman of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM), told his party members to learn from the mistakes of former ruling party United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), or risk losing the people’s support.

Speaking at an event on Thursday (Sep 12) to mark the third anniversary of PPBM’s formation, the prime minister reminded party members that their struggles should not be about power and money if they wished to remain in the government.

“In the 14th general election, they (political opponents) promised to raise wages, raise money for the people because they believed the people would support them, but that was totally rejected by the people.

“We will not spend money. We depend on the nationalist spirit and our race to win the support of the people. Not in the way we spend money on them,” he said.

Dr Mahathir cautioned that if PPBM embraced money politics like the party it defeated last year, “we will lose too”.

READ: Pakatan Harapan government not out to get rid of UMNO: PM Mahathir

The nonagenarian was UMNO president and Malaysia’s prime minister for 22 years from 1981 to 2003, before he retired at the age of 78.  

Last year, he joined forces with his former political rivals to form Pakatan Harapan (PH) and pulled a shock electoral victory, unseating the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition that he once led.

UMNO, which has been grappling with its current position as an opposition party, will forge a formal political pact with another Malay-based party, Parti Islam Se-Malaysia, this weekend.

Commentary: Malay political unity in Malaysia is but a myth

At the Thursday event, Dr Mahathir told the crowd that PH was borne not out of their own strength, but the weakness of their opponents.

“Although it’s not something we want to hear, we have to admit that they lost because the people have massively rejected them,” he was quoted as saying by MalayMail.


Also present at the PPBM event were several PH component party leaders, including Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) deputy president Azmin Ali and Selangor Chief Minister Amirudin Shari, also from PKR.

Mr Azmin was earlier seen at the PPBM’s prayer session, sitting at the front row alongside PPBM top leaders, MalayMail reported.

Azmin Ali Bersatu

Azmin Ali (in silver), deputy president of Parti Keadilan Rakyat, was present at the prayer session commemorating Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s third anniversary on Sep 12, 2019. (Photo: Facebook/Azmin Ali) 

READ: Malaysia’s Anwar dismisses rumours about Azmin leaving PKR

The Economic Affairs Minister was recently implicated in a sex video scandal, which deepened the internal rift within PKR.  

Mr Azmin is said to have been absent from the PKR leadership and political bureau meetings since last November, according to MalayMail.


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