Non-performing cabinet ministers would be dropped and replaced by other more qualified members of parliament, said Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The prime minister said selecting cabinet ministers was not an easy task and that no cabinet was ever perfect and free of public criticism.
“There is no perfect cabinet. There will always be defects. No matter who we choose there are bound to be people who will express dissatisfaction. I know many people are not happy with my selection. But we cannot satisfy everybody.
“So we will try. If the performance is unsatisfactory, we will drop and choose someone else. But we have to give a chance to new people and we also have to take into consideration requests by the women. So it’s not easy to fill up the cabinet posts,” he said.
He told reporters this after the swearing in of 13 cabinet ministers before Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V at Istana Negara yesterday.
Mahathir said he would now be able to hold a cabinet meeting even though a few more ministerial posts had yet to be filled.
According to him, the number of cabinet ministers would likely reach 28 to include representatives from Sabah and Sarawak.
Meanwhile, Mahathir pointed when asked on the criticisms over his selection of Maszlee Malik as the education minister, to the latter’s credentials as a professor, an intellectual with a religious academic background, who was also proficient in the English language.
“We cannot simply choose an old guard or someone with ‘connection’. We have to give others a chance; many of the new ministers do not have experience. So we have to get the assistance of experts,” he said.