Yes, it is true that in 2019, Mahathir wanted to sack Yeo Bee Yin as Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Minister over the Lynas issue although this eventually did not take place
Malaysiakini today focussed on Liew Chin Tong’s book which revealed that in 2019, the Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad wanted to sack Yeo Bee Yin as Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Minister over the Lynas issue although eventually this did not take place.
I was never involved in this but I learnt about it.
This incident indicates the complexities of the Pakatan Harapan government under Mahathir.
I have said that Pakatan Harapan has to learn the lessons of the 22-month PH government and its toppling by the Sheraton Move conspiracy which ushered in a backdoor, undemocratic, illegitimate and kakistocratic government.
One of these lessons is to be serious about out election pledges.
We have a Buku Pakatan which contained the Pakatan Harapan’s election promises in the 14th General Election.
Early in the Pakatan Harapan Government, it was the Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad who said that the manifesto was not a bible.
As a result, even if 80 or 90 per cent of the election pledges had been implemented in the five-year mandate, damage had been done.
It was worse when the five-year mandate of the PH government was cut short after 22 months by the Sheraton Move conspiracy.
The Pakatan Harapan Government was not a DAP government, but comprised four political parties – DAP, PKR, Amanah and Bersatu.
As Chin Tong recounted in his book, I met Mahathir as Prime Minister twice in his office, where I discussed the importance of restoring public confidence and having a coherent explanation about Pakatan Harapan’s manifesto and policies.
After our second meeting, Pakatan Harapan formed a manifesto review committee with Chin Tong as chairman to address the public perception about undelivered election promises. But the PH government was toppled by the Sheraton Move conspiracy before the PH manifesto review committee could finalise its report.
This is why I cannot understand those who refuse to listen to explanations why a particular election pledge had not been fulfilled, for instance the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) recognition issue.
The Buku Harapan promise on the UEC in the 14th General Election said:
“Pakatan Harapan will undertake to recognise UEC certificates to enter public institutions of higher learning (IPTA) provided that applicants have a credit in Bahasa Melayu at the SPM level. For this purpose, the UEC certificate will be assessed to be equivalent to the existing general qualification for entry into IPTA.”
At the DAP Retreat in 2019, the then Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said the Pakatan Harapan government was committed to the pledge to recognise the UEC certificate to enter public institutions of learning after an assessment. Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim also made a similar commitment.
But the toppling of the Pakatan Harapan government after 22 months by the Sheraton Move conspiracy made it impossible to fulfil the election manifesto which was to be fulfilled within the five-year term.
But there were critics who refuse to listen to explanations, shutting their eyes and closing their ears.
There are advocates who want DAP to return to the past and be an Opposition.
I have been in federal Opposition for 52 years and I have no fears about being in Opposition again. But we must aim to return to form a government, for it is when in power that things can get done.
One, however, must be realistic, that we must work with like-minded political leaders from other political leaders who believe in the Malaysian Dream for Malaysia to be a world-class great nation as the DAP cannot on its own form a federal government in Malaysia.
However, DAP leaders must not be corrupted by power, whether in government or opposition, and throughout the 55 years of DAP history, the DAP leadership has not compromised on this important principle.