Malaysia in turmoil as Mahathir Mohamad proposes unity government

WION Web Team Malaysia Feb 26, 2020, 07.05 PM(IST)

File photo of Malaysia PM Mahathir Mohamad. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Addressing the nation in a live broadcast, Mahathir stressed on the need for a government that would prioritise country over everything else.

Malaysia's interim Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has proposed the possibilty of a unity government. 

Also Read: Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad sends resignation letter to king

The interim prime minister proposed a unified administration of individuals - one that is devoid of party politics and ideology.

Addressing the nation in a live broadcast, Mahathir stressed on the need for a government that would prioritise country over everything else.

"Party politics must be put aside for now," said Mahathir. "If allowed, I will try to form an inclusive government, not siding with any political parties."

"If I still have the support I will return. If not I will accept whoever is chosen," he added. 

Once rivals, Mahathir and Anwar had collectively defeated the Umno party in the general elections that were held in May 2018.

The political crisis in Malaysia started after Anwar accused Mahathir of joining hands with opposition in a bid to continue to stay in power. 

In response to these developments, Mahathir tendered his resignation letter to the king and continued as interim prime minister on his insistence.

The continued distrust in ruling coalition and the long-standing tensions between Mahathir and Anwar has left the country in political limbo. 

It was also reported earlier that Mahathir's supporters had met with opposition party leader who is accused of one of world's biggest financial scandals but Mahathir has made it clear that he will not join hands with the opposition party.

In his public address, Mahathir made it clear that he is still keen on staying asking for some time, he said he would continue if he has the support but, he also seemed to accept if someone else was chosen to lead the country.

The king appoints the prime minister in the country, and he has been interviewing all the country's MPs since Monday to work out a solution. A candidate must have the backing of at least 112 MPs to become the prime minister.