JOHOR BARU, Aug 12 — The leadership of the Kota Tinggi Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) division has collapsed after 15 of its committee members quit the party today.
The exodus was led by its outgoing division chief Baser Senin and eight out of the division’s 13 branch chiefs who cited their loss of confidence in party president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s leadership.
They also pledged their support to former Bersatu chairman Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
In a statement issued today, Baser said he and the party’s divisional committee felt the party’s central leadership has betrayed the people's mandate.
“We do not fully support the president's decision to remove Dr Mahathir and the others who had struggled from the beginning until they became the government.
“Committee members, including the Srikandi and Armada wings, left the party and resigned from their respective positions because they have lost confidence and the trust in the president.
“This decision was also made because the current leadership betrayed the mandate given by the people,” said Baser in the statement sent to the division’s committee in a special meeting in Kota Tinggi last night.
Baser added that all the division members who left have pledged to support Dr Mahathir’s current struggle.
“We do not rule out the possibility of supporting and aspiring to be a member of Dr Mahathir’s newly established political party.
“We hope that Bersatu will re-evaluate the basis of the party’s original struggle and return to the objective of its establishment.
“Hopefully, Bersatu will return to champion its original objective when it was established to fight kleptocracy and fulfil the aspirations of Dr Mahathir’s struggle,” said Baser.
However, it was not known whether Baser and those that have quit today will join Dr Mahathir’s still nameless party.
On Sunday, Johor Bersatu chief Mazlan Bujang was reported to have dismissed allegations that there was a mutiny among its members wishing to join Dr Mahathir’s new party.
He said the heads of all 26 divisions in the state and their members support the leadership of party president Muhyiddin, reiterating that Johor Bersatu did not have any internal problems.
Last Friday, Dr Mahathir, who is also the Langkawi MP, announced that his new political party will be fully independent and will not avow support to either the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) or his former coalition partners Pakatan Harapan (PH).
The former prime minister, who stepped down from office in February, said his “independent party” will be centred on fighting corruption and kleptocracy.