Malaysiakini NEWS

Ex-Umno MPs join Bersatu; EAC a show of no-confidence?

Kini Roundup  |  Published:

KINI ROUNDUP | Here are the key headlines you may have missed yesterday, in brief.

Umno defectors join Bersatu

Seven MPs who had resigned from Umno formally joined Bersatu yesterday, with Bersatu chairperson Dr Mahathir Mohamad handing them their membership cards.

Among them was the Tasek Gelugor MP Shabudin Yahaya, known for his controversial statements on rape. However, Mahathir said Shabudin should be judged not by his past, but by who he is now.

With the latest round of defections, Pakatan Harapan and Warisan together have 134 MPs in Parliament, just 14 seats shy of a two-thirds majority.

In an immediate response, PKR vice-president Chang Lih Kang said Pakatan Harapan should reject defecting BN lawmakers, while Umno acting president Mohamad Hasan said the defectors no longer had anything to do with his party.

EAC a show of no-confidence?

Veteran media figure Abdul Kadir Jasin claimed that Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s move to set up the Economic Action Council (EAC) amounts to a tacit admission of the government’s deficiencies, especially that of the cabinet.

However, Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali said the formation of the EAC had nothing to do with the cabinet’s performance. Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin also disagreed with Kadir’s view.

Mahathir explained that the EAC is needed because even a cabinet comprising “brilliant” people could go wrong if they relied solely on their own perspectives.

Other Kinibites

In conjunction with the 10th-year anniversary of the Perak Crisis, Malaysiakini has published a special report looking at anti-hopping laws – just in time for the latest defections to Bersatu.

For the second day of the inquest into the death of firefighter Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim, coroner Rofiah Mohamad visited the areas surrounding the Seafield Sri Mahariamman Temple in Subang Jaya and heard testimonies from Adib’s colleagues and supervisor.

A source claimed that auditor-general Madinah Mohamad’s contract would not be extended and her term will end on Feb 22.

Looking ahead

Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) will be announcing its candidate for the Semenyih by-election tonight, while former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak will also be visiting the constituency.

Thailand’s Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai is making a working visit to Malaysia, where he will meet Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his Malaysian counterpart Saifuddin Abdullah.

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