PUTRAJAYA (Feb 12): Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) has welcomed and distributed membership cards to seven new party members who were formerly UMNO Members of Parliament.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who is also PPBM chairman, said the party has done its due diligence and has accepted the new MPs but added that their membership does not grant them any form of protection from past misdeeds.
The seven former UMNO MPs who have joined PPBM are Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin (MP for Larut), Datuk Dr Abdul Latif Ahmad (Mersing), Datuk Shabudin Yahaya (Tasek Gelugor), Datuk Mohd Fasiah Mohd Fakeh (Sabak Bernam), Datuk Seri Ikmal Hisham Abdul Aziz (Tanah Merah), Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin (Masjid Tanah)and Datuk Rosol Wahid (Hulu Terengganu).
"Their membership of PPBM is not a form of protection against any mistakes that were made in the past. These members have come onboard as regular members. Based on the terms that we have set, they cannot hold any other post.
"However, we may consult them to get their opinion on certain matters. In the event of an election, we may give them the chance to campaign on behalf of PPBM and Pakatan Harapan," Dr Mahathir the press conference this afternoon.
Asked if he is concerned of the commitment and support of the new members, given that some had previously voiced their opposition against other PH members, Dr Mahathir said the past should not be brought up.
"I'm sure some of them have made some minor misbehaviour. But if we look into the past of everyone, we will not be able to appoint anybody because we have all made mistakes in the past. But we can't hold that against them. It is what they are now that counts," said the 93-year old chairman.
Dr Mahathir added that he used to criticise Lim Kit Siang in the past and yet they are working together now.
Asked if he is concerned that the new members may make a jump back to UMNO should things go awry, Dr Mahathir said he himself would leave PH if the party strays from its objective of serving the people.
"I used to be in UMNO too and now I'm working with DAP, Keadilan and Amanah. If the party does not serve the nation, I would switch parties too," he said.