PUTRAJAYA – August 9, 2016: The prime movers behind the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) today vowed that it will be a party for all pribumi (sons of the soil) that hopes to reach every part of the country.
This being an initiative of former senior Umno leaders, including its former president Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamd, Bersatu’s main aim is to dislodge the hold by Umno and the Barisan Nasional on Malaysian politics, beginning with the next general election.
At a press conference here after he had submitted Bersatu’s application at the Registar of Societies (RoS) today, the party’s pro-tem president Tan Sri Muhyddin Yassin had this to say: “This party is not exclusive for any specific state….. this is a party for all Malaysians.”
In the next breath he stated that membership is open to all pribumi — Malays and Bumiputra.
Muhyiddin also brushed off claims that Bersatu will be a mono-racial party, adding that non-pribumi can also join.
He qualified what appears to be a contradiction of sorts by saying “there are two types of membership”. One is ordinary membership and the other associate membership.
Associate members, however, cannot vote or contest in party election but can be appointed to certain positions.
According to Muhyiddin, Bersatu is willing to collaborate with any political party and non-governmental organisation that shares its principles.
“We will strive to unite all Malaysians to achieve our mission, which includes to save Malaysia, to fight for institutional reformation and to guard the interests and well-being of Malaysians regardless of race and religion.”
Present with Muhyiddin were Bersatu pro-tem secretary Kamarul Azman Habibur Rahman and committee members Anina Saadudin and Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman.
The plan to form Bersatu by Mahathir and supporters follows months of relentless attacks on the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, culminating in calls for Najib to resign.