Mageran should have been formed at start of Emergency, says Umno president Zahid Hamidi

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Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi speaks to members of the press outside Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur June 11, 2021. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi speaks to members of the press outside Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur June 11, 2021. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, June 11 — Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said forming a National Operations Council, or Mageran as it is known by its Malay abbreviation, should have happened at the start of the Emergency period.

He however stressed to members of the media who had gathered outside the palace gates that the topic was not broached during his hour-long audience with Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah today.

He added that the proclamation of an Emergency should have sufficed but its purpose had deviated from its original aim.

“We did not discuss the Mageran matter. I feel it is something normal outside the scope of the existing situation because the Emergency is supposed to cover it but it has been used to achieve other purposes,” he said.

Earlier today, the Pakatan Harapan presidential council rejected former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s proposal to convene a Mageran.

In a statement, PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Parti Amanah Negara president Mohamad Sabu and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said they felt the state of Emergency and restoring Parliament should take priority over the formation of another council.

Yesterday, Dr Mahathir reportedly said he had suggested forming a Mageran during his audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The 95-year-old said this could potentially steer the country in the right direction and help solve the health, economic, and social issues currently plaguing the country.

He said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah did not dismiss his suggestion outright, but pointed out that such a call must come from the government.

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