KUALA LUMPUR: Several hours after announcing a portion of Malaysia's new cabinet, newly-minted Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday proceeded to hold a meeting with former nemesis turned ally Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
It is understood that the meeting, which was attended by Pakatan Harapan's top brass, was called to discuss the appointment of ministers ahead of the imminent announcement of Pakatan Harapan's remaining seven ministerial portfolios.
The meeting took place at the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital where Anwar is seeking treatment yesterday evening. This was confirmed by PKR vice-president Tian Chua, who was present at the venue.
"I can confirm that the prime minister had a meeting with Anwar at 5pm but I don't have the details as I was not part of that discussion," he told the New Straits Times Press when contacted.
"However, the purpose of this meeting is likely linked to the appointment of Pakatan Harapan's new cabinet ministers, whose names will be announced soon."
It is understood that Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, Deputy Prime Minister-designate Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, PKR vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar and Ampang member of parliament Zuraida Kamaruddin attended the meeting.
Dr Mahathir yesterday named ministers for the key finance, home and defence portfolios, but left the other seven posts unfilled.
Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was named home minister, while Parti Amanah Negara president Mohamad Sabu was placed in charge of the defence ministry.
However, PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli accused the prime minister of bulldozing through the appointment of the three ministers, claiming Dr Mahathir had failed to consult Pakatan Harapan parties before announcing the names, and that the decision was made unilaterally.
Anwar is scheduled to be released from prison on Tuesday, after which he is expected to receive a royal pardon from Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V.
Dr Mahathir has agreed to step down as prime minister to make way for Anwar, who will have to stand for election or be made a senator to become eligible for the job.