Thursday, January 21, 2016

All eyes on Mukhriz as he goes about his day

Eyes will be trained on Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir Thursday as he faces pressure from his fellow Kedah Umno leaders calling for his ouster.

The Kedah Mentri Besar was conspicuously missing at a Northern Corridor Economic Region (Koridor Utara) meeting and document exchange ceremony at the Prime Minister's Office.

All the other heads of the northern states, including Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, were present at the meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He was represented by Kedah executive chairman of industry and investment Datuk Ku Abd Rahman Ku Ismail.

His schedule for the rest of Thursday also appears to have been disrupted.

His made an appearance in the morning in conjunction with an award ceremony on the occasion of the Kedah Sultan's birthday at Istana Bukit at 9.25am, accompanied by his wife Datin Nurzietah Zakaria.

However, his subsequent meetings on the Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro) studies and his programme with Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai were cancelled.

Although no reasons were given for the cancellation, it is believed that Mukhriz would be making time for his supporters from Jerlun division, which he leads.

He is said to be making an appearance at 3pm at Wisma Umno Jerlun.

Messages have also been spread social media platforms, calling for Mukhriz supporters to gather at Dataran Pekan Rabu in Pekan Kuah, Langkawi at 6pm.

However, it is not known if Mukhriz will show up.

On Wednesday, 14 Umno division leaders, except for Jerlun which Mukhriz heads, have cited lost of confidence in Mukhriz as the state party chief and Mentri Besar.

The reasons, among others, include that Mukhriz had failed to unite the state leadership and party machinery at all levels and there is no strategic plan for the party ahead of the next general election.

The rebellion came just about a month after Mukhriz hit out at the national party leadership by defending Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal, who were removed from the cabinet for questioning the handling of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MBD) by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

Mukhriz, in response to the latest attack, said his work is best judged by the people whom he has served, and that his position was determined with the consent of the Kedah Sultan Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah.

"My position as Menteri Besar is based on the mandate and trust given by the rakyat and also on the consent of his highness, the Sultan of Kedah, on the proposal of the Prime Minister," he reportedly said.

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