PETALING JAYA: Parti Pribumi Bersatu (Bersatu) Malaysia president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin (pic) claimed that other political leaders had approached him to work together in the next general election as a means of avoiding multi-cornered fights.

“After the Johor State Election, I was approached by several political party leaders, including from Parti Pejuang Tanah Air (Pejuang).

“They voiced their opinion that it would be better for non-Barisan parties to form a political cooperation to avoid a multi-cornered clash in GE15,” the Pagoh MP and former Prime Minister said in a statement on Saturday (April 2).

According to Muhyiddin, Barisan Nasional was able to win the Melaka and Johor State elections due to multi-cornered clashes, where the anti-Barisan vote was split.

He further added that the political leaders wanted to avoid multi-cornered fights in GE-15 to stop Barisan from returning to power.

“Therefore, I have taken the initiative to meet with leaders of political parties from both the government and the opposition to establish cooperation in GE-15.

“This is an initial step to get the views of political party leaders and no final decision has been made,” said Muhyiddin.

The meeting between Muhyiddin and Dr Mahathir, which was arranged by a senior Pejuang leader, was part of this initiative, said Muhyiddin.

Claims were murky on who reached out to whom first.

Earlier, Pejuang president Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir said that Muhyiddin had requested a meeting with Dr Mahathir, but Pejuang Youth claimed that Mahathir who had initiated the meeting.

In a press conference on Friday (April 1), Dr Mahathir told reporters that he rejected Muhyiddin ‘s proposal of cooperation.

After Dr Mahathir resigned in February 2020, Muhyiddin took up the role of prime minister for 17 months from March 2020 before he himself resigned in August last year and was replaced by Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

The week-long political impasse in February 2020 that carried on till the first week of March 2020, dubbed as the “Sheraton Move”, saw the collapse of Pakatan after 11 PKR MPs and Bersatu left.

Relations between Dr Mahathir and Muhyiddin soured, with Dr Mahathir claiming that Muhyiddin had “backstabbed” him.