DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang has expressed hope that a new opposition coalition will be formed on Malaysia Day, Sept 16.
Lim said this after Gerakan Harapan Baru (GHB) secretary Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said he expected a new Islamist party to be formed by independence day (Aug 31).
"If a new Islamist party is formed by Merdeka Day, hopefully a new Pakatan Baru, whether called Pakatan Rakyat 2.0, Harapan Rakyat or any other name, can be formed by Malaysia Day.
"(I hope it will) be the rallying point of Malaysians, regardless of race, religion or region for fundamental political changes in Malaysia to save Malaysia from the disasters of a rogue and failed state," said Lim in his speech at a forum organised by the DAP in Johor Bahru last night.
He admitted that after seven years, Pakatan Rakyat had died after fighting one general election in 2013, "breaking the hearts of all Malaysians who had vested such high hopes and trust in Pakatan".
Although he is saddened by the demise of Pakatan, Lim said the coalition's death was unavoidable when one of the three component parties refused to abide by Pakatan’s common policy framework
He said there were already signs of trouble in Pakatan in the 2013 general election, when PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang ( photo ) approved PAS candidates that led to three-cornered fights in six state assembly seats, benefitting the Umno candidates concerned.
"Looking back, it may be a blessing in disguise that Pakatan failed to win the majority of the parliamentary seats in the 13th general election, for if the majority had been a slim one, Pakatan would be at the mercy of the PAS president, who has never accepted Anwar Ibrahim as the Pakatan candidate to be the prime minister of Malaysia," Lim said.
If Hadi had persisted in his opposition to Anwar as the prime minister, he could even have swung his parliamentary numbers in support of an Umno nominee, creating the first major crisis for Pakatan Rakyat.
"We must learn from these mistakes in Pakatan and ensure that the new Pakatan Rakyat to be formed with the formation of the new Islamist party by Merdeka Day will have more unity of purpose, be more cohesive and united in effecting far-reaching political changes in Malaysia."
On another matter, Lim called on eight ministers and two deputy ministers to declare whether they had received a portion of funds from the RM2.6 billion Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak received in his private bank accounts for their GE13 campaigning.
"Before tomorrow’s cabinet meeting, they should declare whether they have received funding from Najib's RM2.6 billion personal accounts for the 13th general election campaigning, and if so, how much they had each received," he said.
Lim named the ministers and deputy ministers as:
1. Hishammuddin Hussein – Defence Minister.
2. Azalina Othman – Minister in Prime Minister's Department.
3. Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah – Second Finance Minister.
4. Liow Tiong Lai – Transport Minister.
5. Anifah Aman – Foreign Minister.
6. Ismail Sabri Yaakob – Rural and Regional Development Minister.
7. Ahmad Shabery Cheek – Agriculture and Agro-based Industries Minister
8. Mahdzir Khalid – Education Minister
9. Tajuddin Abdul Rahman – Deputy Agriculture Minister
10. Razali Ibrahim – Deputy Minister, Prime Minister's Department
As for Barisan Nasional Backbenchers' Club (BNBBC) chairperson Shahrir Samad ( photo ), who had confirmed the claim by whistleblower site Sarawak Report that he had received RM1 million from the prime minister, Lim said Shahrir's confirmation was an acknowledgement of the credibility of the website's reports.
"It has been accused of being recklessly irresponsible in making baseless allegations against Umno/Barisan Nasional leaders, but up to now, there has not been a single case of any Sarawak Report posting shown to be false or untrue.
"Now that Shahrir has admitted receiving RM1 million from Najib's RM2.6 billion personal accounts for the 13th general election campaigning, it is now the turn of International Trade and Industry Deputy Minister, Ahmad Maslan, to confirm whether he has received RM2 million from Najib," Lim said.
Yesterday, the BNBBC portal quoted Shahrir as saying that accepting funds from the party president was normal.