“I could have taken the easy way out by working with the kleptocrats” – Muhyiddin

By S. Harrish

IN an emotional resignation speech, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said he had stood by his principles and refused to give in to “kleptocrats”.

In a “live” televised address, he took a parting shot at his political opponents in Umno, saying he could have taken the easy way out but refused to compromise on the matter and interfere in the judiciary.

“I will never cooperate with the kleptocrats, who are waiting to be freed by the courts,” he said.

Muhyiddin said he regarded the turn of events as God’s will.

“Six years ago I was sacked as the deputy prime minister because I defended my principles by refusing to compromise over the 1MDB scandal.

“I fought, I sacrificed and in the end, God helped me in my struggle. I was entrusted to lead the country as prime minister.

“However, today it is fated that this will be my last day as prime minister and I accept the will of God,” he said.

Muhyiddin conceded that he did not command the majority confidence of MPs after 15 Umno MPs withdrew their support for him.

He added that attempts to gain bipartisan cooperation across all party lines had failed after his overtures were rejected by opposition parties.

“Therefore, it is clear that I have lost the confidence,” he said.

Muhyiddin is now the nation’s shortest-serving prime minister, having been in office for only 17 months.

He hoped a new government will be formed soon so that it can continue his administration’s efforts to tackle Covid-19.

He also assured Malaysians that the government had ordered 87 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine and everyone will receive their jabs.

Muhyiddin also paid tribute to the civil service and frontliners in the country’s Covid-19 battle, political allies and his family.