PETALING JAYA, The Democratic Action Party is not set on supporting Shafie Apdal as the Prime Minister designate. It may be the Anwar Ibrahim – Shafie -Mukhriz Mahathir line-up.
According to a reliable source, the DAP central executive committee (CEC) meeting reached consensus that the party would remain with Pakatan Harapan and work together to consolidate strength within the coalition and East Malaysia.
“The CEC has decided to handover the issue of Shafie as Prime Minister designate to be discussed at the presidential council of Pakatan Harapan," said the source.
After discussion on "Dr Mahathir Mohamad-Anwar" pair failed, former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir has proposed the `"Shafie-Anwar-Mukhriz" line-up where Shafie, who is Sabah Chief Minister, would be the Prime Minister designate for the Pakatan Harapan Plus. Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) president Anwar is the Deputy Prime Minister I and former Kedah Menteri Besar Mukhriz Mahathir as the Deputy Prime Minister II.
Sources told Sin Chew Daily that the Pakatan Harapan needed a consensus and DAP would never betray Anwar.
“We are never certain on Shafie as the Prime Minister designate, the Pakatan Harapan presidential council will discuss further in the meeting," he said.
The source said the party's target is not focusing on winning back ruling power but to prepare for a possible snap poll in November.
“Sources from Umno said a snap poll may be held in November. We are preparing for the snap poll. By then it would be a good timing to raise the issue of `Shafie as Prime Minister designate’. We will still have time to discuss the issue," he said.
DAP is aware of the PKR stand backing Anwar as the Prime Minister. If the PKR does not support Shafie as the Prime Minister, there is still room for changes to take place. By then it could be Anwar -Shafie pair.
“The stand of DAP is clear that Pakatan Harapan should have consensus. If Anwar does not support Shafie as the Prime Minister, we can still talk. Prior to this the topic is Dr Mahathir as the Prime Minister and Anwar the deputy. But Anwar disagrees. If Anwar is against Shafie as the Prime Minister designte, we can also switch for Anwar to be the Prime Minister and Shafie the deputy.”
On Shafie to turn down the offer as No 2, the leader said Shafie would find it hard not to work with Pakatan Harapan. If he does not back Pakatan Harpaan, he will be isolated by Perikatan Nasional where his political power would be at stake soon.
“If Shafie joins Pakatan Harapan Plus, the coalition’s strength will be boosted further with East Malaysia powers to battle in the elections in November. Pakatan Harapan is even stronger.
“The Shafie as PM issue is to counter the extremism or racial issues in West Malaysia with the dynamism in East Malaysia," he said.
The source also said that Shafie who received backing from DAP in Sabah and Sarawak were confined to state level and not a party stand at the federal level.
“It is time for Anwar to proof his leadership by consolidating all opposition parties to regain the mandate of the people in 14th General Elections. At the same time, we may have a snap poll in November.”
The source said DAP has supported Shafie as the PM designate based on four factors:
1.The racial and religious harmony in East Malaysia can counter the racism and religious issue arising from collaboration between PAS and Umno. It would be a boost to defend secularism and uphold the constitution.
2.Sarawak would not oppose to an East Malaysian being the Prime Minister out in open and this would help Pakatan Harapan to gain support in East Malaysia
3.Working with Shafie will enhance winning chances of Pakatan Harapan
4.The impasse between Dr Mahathir and Anwar would be resolved with a new candidate for Prime Minister.
DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng has called for a presidential council meeting of the Pakatan Harapan to be held before 13 July, the day where Dewan Rakyat resumes its sitting.
The CEC of DAP has also reaffirmed its stand that the Pakatan Harapan should be mobilising all powers to combat Perikatan Nasional.