KUALA LUMPUR: Parti Pejuang Tanah Air has announced its withdrawal from the Gerakan Tanah Air (GTA) coalition to focus on strengthening the party.

Its president Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir (pic) said the decision was made after taking into account the views of delegates in the second general assembly of Pejuang on Saturday (Jan 14) following the party’s poor performance in the 15th General Election.

“I informed the GTA supreme council meeting on Dec 6 last year that there was a sentiment among Pejuang members for the party to withdraw from GTA.

“However, I left a caveat that I wanted to wait for the official decision from the party’s general assembly that concluded today,” he told a press conference here on Saturday.

In GE15, Pejuang, established by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, failed to win any contested parliamentary seats.

However, Mukhriz said Pejuang’s stance was to remain open to holding any negotiations with existing political coalitions to face state polls taking place this year.

“A special committee will be established by the party’s executive council to evaluate all available options…for now, no negotiations have been held yet, only informal discussions.

“But soon, we will meet with the leaders of these existing coalitions to explore the possibility of forging cooperation,” he said.

On the strategy for the upcoming state elections, the former Jerlun MP said Pejuang will highlight candidates who are already known and well-liked by the local community and will re-examine the states where the party will contest in. – Bernama