SHAH ALAM, Oct 22 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has once again promised that Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will take over his position when the former resigns.
“After I leave my position, surely there will be a replacement, and if the masses want Datuk Seri Anwar, then they have the right to get Datuk Seri Anwar.
However, Dr Mahathir stressed that he would deliver his end of the promise, but the final decision lies in the hands of Malaysians.
“I promise after I resign, Anwar will take over.
“(But) it depends on the people to choose who they want,” he said during a forum at the Karangkraf Hall moderated by Tan Sri Johan Jaafar, which was organised by Malay daily Sinar Harian.
Pakatan Harapan had announced during the campaigning period before the general election that Dr Mahathir would helm the position as prime minister, before passing the baton to Anwar.
The promise to see Anwar rise to the top then proved more feasible after he was granted a full Royal Pardon by the Yang Di Pertuan Agong, and recently won the Port Dickson parliamentary seat by-election.
However Dr Mahathir did stress he has misjudged characters before, drawing reference to the two former prime ministers Tun Abdullah Badawi and the scandal-ridden Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
“I cannot guarantee (it),” Dr Mahathir responded when asked by the moderator whether Anwar was the same person from 22 years ago when he held a position in office.
“Like when I chose Datuk Abdullah, I thought it was a good choice, he was a religious person, but look what happened.
“Then I chose his replacement, that he be replaced with Najib, the son of Tun Abdul Razak who was an icon; I thought it would surely would be good, but then looked what happened,” drawing chuckles and applause from the crowd.
Badawi was prime minister from 2003 to 2009, followed by Najib, who took over before losing the general election this year.