PKR has for the first time admitted that its president Anwar Ibrahim had banked on support from scandal-tainted Umno leaders in his bid to become prime minister.
Party spokesman Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin said the confirmation by Pasir Salak MP Tajuddin Abdul Rahman today, that Umno chief Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and his predecessor Najib Razak had thrown their support behind Anwar, was proof of the PKR leader’s repeated claims that he had support from the majority of MPs.
“His (Tajuddin’s) statement today also confirmed that Pakatan Harapan and Anwar Ibrahim have sufficient amounts of support from MPs to retake the government after the people’s mandate was betrayed through the Sheraton Move,” Shamsul said in a statement hours after a tell-all media conference by Tajuddin in which he accused party leaders of duping Umno members.
“Thus, the mocking by some who said Anwar was lying when he stated that he had strong and convincing support on Sept 22, 2020, has now been answered,” he added.
Anwar had claimed that he had “a strong, formidable and convincing majority” in his quest for the top office, following which he had an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to show the numbers.
The palace however criticised the PKR leader, saying he failed to furnish the names of the MPs said to be behind him.
Zahid and Najib, who are facing scores of criminal and corruption charges involving billions of ringgit, are seen as leading a group of former Umno leaders known as the “court cluster”.
Weeks after Anwar claimed to have the numbers to oust then prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin in September 2020, MalaysiaNow revealed that Zahid and Najib had jointly written a letter to Istana Negara to express their support for Anwar.
Last year, the secret alliance between Anwar and Umno leaders was further exposed following a leaked telephone conversation between the PKR boss and Zahid, where both sang praises of each other in a plan to get Umno members to support a call to cut ties with Bersatu.
This was followed by Anwar’s confirmation that he had been given the green light by PKR to enter into talks with Umno and other parties to form a new alliance to oust Muhyiddin.
Muhyiddin resigned in August last year following a coup by Zahid and Najib, where about a dozen Umno MPs renounced their support for the Bersatu leader to helm the government.