KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 10 — Former prime minister and long-serving Pagoh MP Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said that he is ready to face anyone willing to challenge his seat during the next general election (GE15).
"It does not matter who comes and contests, this is a democratic country and I do not want to belittle or scold them," Muhyiddin was quoted saying by Malay daily Berita Harian,.
"He has his own mind to consider contesting here, and his party Umno will also decide, while here, if my party suggests I contest here again, I will," he added, referring to reports of Umno supreme council member and former Muar MP Datuk Seri Razali Ibrahim moving constituencies and possibly contesting in Pagoh during GE15.
The Bersatu president also added that he would not be arrogant and underestimate any party or individual who may contest against him in the Johor constituency.
On Perikanan Nasional's (PN) preparations for GE15, Muhyiddin said that the coalition is already prepared for it, but admitted that several aspects must be considered first.
"PN has no issue, and if the prime minister decides to dissolve Parliament tomorrow, we are ready to face GE15. But the decision to dissolve Parliament is between the prime minister and his Cabinet, and in the Cabinet we have our people, and the decision to dissolve cannot be made by himself, as based on our Constitution.
"As of [Friday], I have not heard anything about dissolving Parliament, but we'll see tomorrow or the day after if the Cabinet decides, it's up to them," he said.
Talk of GE15 has been swirling as Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob comes under pressure from his party Umno to call for the national polls.
These rumours were further enforced when Ismail Sabri announced that his Cabinet would be tabling Budget 2023 three weeks earlier, on October 7, with analysts predicting that he would call for the dissolution of Parliament the next day.