Rais reveals details of negotiations with Umno and PAS

Modified 26 Feb 2020, 8:32 am

Umno and PAS did not demand that DAP be excluded from the unity government headed by Dr Mahathir Mohamad, said Bersatu strategy and policy bureau chief Rais Hussin.

In an interview with Astro Awani last night, Rais (photo, above) said there were only two conditions set.

He said the first condition was that Umno and PAS wanted to be part of the unity government "en bloc".

The second condition was that they wanted to be part of the unity government immediately.

"They blame DAP for everything. To me, everyone has strengths and weaknesses. We will enhance the strengths and work on the weaknesses.

"They said DAP was the reason why they can't accept the unity government, but the negotiations were not about that. The negotiations were very clear.

"Firstly, en bloc. Secondly, now. Think about it. Why now? Not two or three months later? We think this has something to do with ongoing court cases," said Rais.

Yesterday evening, Umno and PAS held a joint press conference to announce that they were withdrawing their support for the unity government because of two reasons.

Firstly, they did not want to be in a unity government with DAP and secondly, that they wanted all MPs from their parties to be in the unity government and not a select few.

Because negotiations broke down, Umno and PAS said they were withdrawing their support for Mahathir as the head of the unity government.

This dramatic volte-face came just 48 hours after Umno and PAS figures began declaring that a new "Perikatan Nasional" governing coalition was about to be formed.

On Sunday evening, a large number of Umno and PAS MPs had gathered at Sheraton Hotel, Petaling Jaya for dinner where Azmin Ali and 10 other renegade PKR MPs played host.

What followed was the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan federal government and an immediate attempt by Mahathir to cobble together a new government.


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