KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 19 — Several MPs from Umno and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) have met to discuss whether they should unite for Malay interests, Padang Besar MP Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin claimed today.
Sinar Online quoted Zahidi as saying that several Umno lawmakers have been involved in talks, but those discussions were not about leaving the Opposition party but about possibly uniting both Umno and ruling party PPBM.
“The talks involved several Umno Members of Parliament whose names have gone viral,” the Perlis lawmaker was quoted saying.
Zahidi was referring to a purported list of 17 MPs planning to leave Umno that has gone viral on WhatsApp, after two senior MPs — Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed and Datuk Seri Anifah Aman — quit the party.
Zahidi reportedly said suggestions of an Umno-PPBM unity were still at the early stages.
“We’ve just been talking, there hasn’t been any decision made yet. We’re still evaluating the pros and cons if we unite, as long as we reach the best solution in the interest of Malays.”
The Padang Besar MP reportedly said Umno chose PPBM because PPBM was a Malay-only party, unlike the multi-racial PKR.
Prime Minister and PPBM chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said recently that Pakatan Harapan would not allow Umno to join the coalition.