Dr M may align Pejuang with Warisan, Muda to avoid Harapan’s ‘baggage’

But until GE15 is called, Pejuang will remain an independent ‘third force’.

Dr Mahathir Mohamad says Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang) is not interested in forming an electoral pact with his former allies at Pakatan Harapan due to the latter’s “baggage”.

Instead, it might seek an arrangement with Warisan and the Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (Muda) should the 15th general election come before it is due.

Asked about the yet-to-be-registered party’s future plans today, Mahathir said Pejuang will remain an independent “third force” until a general election is held.

“(If) there are other parties that have similar objectives like ourselves, that is to say they are against corruption, with them we may have an election understanding.

“But that will be done at the last moment just before the election if the election is held. We are now a third force and we will remain a third force until the election is near,” he said.

Elaborating, Mahathir said Pejuang was not hoping to work with anyone from Harapan or the incumbent government Perikatan Nasional.

“Well, they are not from Harapan, they are not from PN.

“There is one party from Sabah, Warisan, which at this moment has not aligned itself with any other party.

“There is also another party that has not been registered, Muda, the young people’s party,” he said.

The Registrar of Societies (ROS) has yet to approve Pejuang’s and Muda’s applications to register as political parties.

Mahathir set up Pejuang after he was ousted from Bersatu last year. He is its pro-tem chairperson.

Free from the past

For GE14, Mahathir had led Harapan to defeat BN and make electoral history.

He served as prime minister for 22 months until the Sheraton Move coup ended the Harapan administration.

Asked why Pejuang was distancing itself from the coalition and if this was due to PKR president Anwar Ibrahim, the Langkawi MP said he wanted to be “free” to provide voters with a third choice.

“When we link with any other party, then, of course, their baggage will affect us. Their past will affect us.

“There are some people who are not very happy with DAP. Some people (are) not happy with Amanah or with PKR. We don’t want to be affected by their past performance.

“We want to be free, we want to be a third force so that the people have a choice instead of just the two coalitions,” Mahathir explained.

By : ANNABELLE LEE – MALAYSIAKINI

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