Potential for stronger parliamentary presence with Muhyiddin helming opposition leader post, says Umno veteran

KUALA LUMPUR: An Umno veteran has suggested that Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin take the post of opposition leader, as he would excel in leading its members of parliament (MPs).

Former Johor Baru MP Tan Sri Shahrir Samad said this was because opposition lawmakers did not appear to view the Parliament as the fundamental pillar of the nation's political system.

"If Muhyiddin, as PN chairman, were to assume the role of opposition leader, he could truly lead PN members of Parliament in the Dewan Rakyat.

"Opposition members, particularly from Pas and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), seemingly do not view Parliament as the most crucial institution in the country's political system.

"In my view, this is a weakness of the PN, allowing their members of parliament to switch allegiances.

"Political leadership is not confined to the party level; it should also be seen and felt within Parliament," he posted on his Facebook page tonight.

Currently, the post of opposition leader is being held by PN secretary-general Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin.

Shahrir added that the country's Parliamentary system recognised the presence of the opposition by establishing the post of opposition leader.

This was a role complete with allowances, an office, and staff, adding that it also held a high position in terms of national protocol.

He added that the presence of Muhyiddin as their leader, should he become the opposition leader, would motivate the MPs on the opposing bloc.

"I am confident they haven't had much opportunity to get close and aren't very familiar with Muhyiddin as their party's top leader.

Shahrir's call comes after four Bersatu MPs Four Bersatu MPs — Zahari Kechik (Jeli), Mohd Azizi Abu Naim (Gua Musang), Datuk Suhaili Abdul Rahman (Labuan) and Datuk Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid (Kuala Kangsar) — declared their support for the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and his Madani government.

The four MPs declared their support on the basis of getting allocations to prioritise the well-being of their constituents.

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