Lokman Adam has defended his action in releasing an audio recording allegedly of Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi attempting to persuade party leaders to team up with Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The recently sacked Umno supreme council member (above) said his action was only meant to expose the president’s purported intent to “betray the party” and he denied revealing any party secrets.
“I revealed to the public the president’s actions in trying to betray the party by forcing 3.7 million Umno members to accept Mahathir as chairperson of the new 'Pakatan Nasional'[...] with Umno as one of the component party members,” he said during a press conference held on Facebook earlier today.
Mahathir had led Umno as party president for over two decades. He eventually left BN for good in 2016 and later led the then opposition Pakatan Harapan to victory in 14th general election.
Speculation has been rife that there are attempts involving the 94-year-old leader to form a new coalition dubbed 'Pakatan Nasional' to take over the government.
Lokman had on Feb 3, released a three-minute 18-second audio clip which he claimed was that of Zahid speaking during a Jawatankuasa Perhimpunan Muafakat Nasional/Umno meeting.
In the clip, Zahid could not be heard explicitly saying that he wanted to work with Mahathir but did say that he wanted to save Umno.
Lokman, however, has claimed that Zahid, who is Bagan Datuk MP, had reasoned during the meeting that Umno, like PAS, should work with Mahathir and not be
Zahid allegedly also said the problems facing “Bossku” could not be solved without such a collaboration.
“Bossku” is the popular moniker adopted by embattled former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak who is currently facing multiple graft charges.
Lokman’s action led to him being shown the door by Umno’s supreme council.
Lokman today also confirmed receiving his membership termination letter from Umno which was dated Feb 10, 2020.
Appearing undeterred, Lokman claimed the proposal to form 'Pakatan Nasional' was axed following the audio clip controversy.
Instead, he now claimed efforts are underway to form a government with Muafakat Nasional - comprising Umno and PAS - lending support to the prime minister.
“As soon as the meeting to fire me concluded, Zahid lobbied several individuals to get a statutory declaration (SD) supporting Mahathir,” he alleged today.
According to a recent report by whistleblower site Sarawak Report, several federal and opposition lawmakers are inking an SD for Mahathir to serve as prime minister until the next general election.
If true, the SD would be seen as contravening the earlier agreement among Pakatan Harapan parties for PKR president Anwar Ibrahim to succeed Mahathir before the next general election.
However, Anwar has said he has yet to be “officially informed” of this.