It was officially confirmed over the weekend that former leader Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad is Pakatan Harapan’s choice for prime minister if it won the next general elections. Since last year the opposition coalition had been at odds as to who would lead the country in the event it managed to win. It had seem like the guessing game was over when Tun Dr. Mahathir was announced as the candidate soon after Pakatan Harapan held its two-day retreat in December. Yet this was swiftly dashed when news later emerged that the decision was not final. This is testament of how precarious Pakatan Harapan’s partnership really is. Well, politics makes for strange bedfellows. A rather cliché saying but one that aptly describes the nature of the relationship Tun Dr. Mahathir has managed to forge with his former foes.
It was clear from the get-go that the recent Pakatan Harapan Convention 2018 was simply a publicity stunt to show a united front. It was important for the opposition coalition to portray that Tun Dr. Mahathir had the full support of all partners despite there being a sense of wariness among some. A seasoned politician and quite the orator, Tun Dr. Mahathir had of course much to deliver in his over 40-minutes acceptance speech. From thanking Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s family for making the ultimate sacrifice to poking fun at his coalition partners over the seat negotiations, the elderly statesman was clearly in his element.
Now it all boils down to one thing – vote for Pakatan Harapan. Tun Dr. Mahathir had made an impassioned plea to voters to make the right choice. While the elderly statesman was quick to underscore the slew of weaknesses under the present leadership, yet he failed to mention what he would do if he returned to power. There is plenty of literature on Malaysia under Tun Dr. Mahathir. Suffice it to say that Tun Dr. Mahathir was named one of Southeast Asia’s strongman for a reason.