Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Pejuang bloc says it is willing to work with Perikatan Nasional (PN) to form the government if such cooperation does not involve the leaders of the so-called “court cluster” from Umno led by Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
“Yes, we are ready to work with them,” the bloc’s president, Jerlun MP Mukhriz Mahathir, said in an interview with Astro Awani when asked about the possibility of working with PN parties such as Bersatu, PAS and GPS.
“I don’t think we can avoid that if we want enough numbers.”
The court cluster refers to a group of Umno leaders facing multiple charges of corruption, abuse of power and money laundering.
Pejuang was formed after the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government in February last year.
The Bersatu splinter party, which has four MPs, recently received the green light for registration as a political entity.
Yesterday, Muhyiddin Yassin resigned as prime minister after Zahid, former leader Najib Razak and 13 other MPs from Umno retracted their support for him in Parliament.
Umno currently has 38 seats in the Dewan Rakyat.
Zahid’s group has been dubbed “the Umno 15” while the others from the party remain loyal to PN under the leadership of vice-president Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
Zahid, Najib and PKR president Anwar Ibrahim had been at the forefront of efforts to topple Muhyiddin since last year.
Mukhriz said any cooperation by Pejuang with a political pact should not go against the principles of the party’s struggle.
“From the start we have stood firm on our principles regarding the fight against corruption,” he said.
“This is why we will have problems if the majority that we support includes what is known as the court cluster.”
Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and his deputy, Sultan Nazrin Shah, today met with the leaders of political parties as part of the process of appointing a new prime minister.
Each MP is required to submit the name of his or her candidate of choice as prime minister to Istana Negara by 4pm tomorrow.