|PUTRAJAYA, Sept 11 – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi today expressed surprise over Umno vice-president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s statement that he should quit sooner than planned.
Abdullah, who is Umno president, said the Cabinet understood and agreed with his transition plan to step down in June 2010 and the Umno Supreme Council had also agreed to it.
“I’m surprised that a member of my Cabinet should come up with that kind of statement. It is against what has been agreed to,” he told reporters after chairing the 20th MSC Malaysia Implementation Council Meeting at his office here.
|Abdullah was asked to comment on the statement in Singapore yesterday by Muhyiddin, who is the International Trade and Industry Minister, that the transition plan had “fallen away” and should no longer be a consideration.
“I’m surprised because Muhyiddin had also agreed to it,” Abdullah said.
Under the plan, Abdullah is to hand over power – the post of prime minister, the chairmanship of Barisan Nasional (BN) and the presidency of Umno – to his deputy Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in June 2010.
“I’m not staying on just for pleasure. This is not work that I can regard as pleasure,” said Abdullah.
The prime minister said there were many political matters and problems that had to be attended to and “lots of programmes that I must complete”.
Abdullah said these included the reform of the judiciary and the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA).”
“And I still have the IPCMC (Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission), the last part of the police reform, to look into. I have also promised to help eradicate hardcore poverty.
“I would like to work on these things. There is also much to be done to reform Barisan Nasional and our capacity to serve the people,” he said.
As for Umno, Abdullah said he had to help Najib achieve the objectives of the stated programmes.
Asked whether he would ask Muhyiddin for an explanation, Abdullah said: “There is no need to ask me what I’m going to do.”
On former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s decision to rejoin Umno, he said the subject was not discussed at yesterday’s Supreme Council mmeting.
“My view alone is not enough … this is a matter for the party. I cannot make a stand on this,” he said. Dr Mahathir resigned from Umno on May 19. – Bernama
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