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Pakatan Harapan chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad says PPBM has to remain a Malay party in order to gain the support of Malay voters who are ‘still very communal’.

PETALING JAYA: If DAP is de-registered and Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) effort to formalise its coalition falls through, then the multi-racial party shouldn’t expect to contest under its ally, PPBM’s ticket.

PPBM chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad said this was because his party has to remain a Malay party, in order to gain the support of the Malays without which, PH would be crippled in the next general election (GE14).

This was what had caused Pakatan Rakyat the 2013 general election, he added.

“Whether we like it or not, the Malays are still very communal, which was why they are supporting Umno.

“If they see a multi-racial party, they will not support it. They (Pakatan Rakyat) got a lot of support from the Chinese, but little Malay support and without it, you can’t win.

“So we can replace Umno with our group (PPBM), not by being like Umno, but we would be a Malay party.”

The 92-year-old who is also PH’s chairman was speaking to reporters at an open house hosted by DAP’s Zaid Ibrahim, here today.

The former prime minister was asked if DAP would be able to contest in GE14 if, under the worst case scenario, the party’s registration was revoked by the Registrar of Societies (RoS).

This was following the RoS’ instructions for the party to hold a re-election to choose office bearers for its central executive committee (CEC).

RoS director-general Mohammad Razin Abdullah said if the party failed to do so, DAP’s CEC will not be recognised and the committee will not be able to function legitimately.

DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng last night announced that the party will hold a fresh election to prevent its de-registration..

“There are two other parties (within PH) which are multi-racial. They (DAP) can contest under those two parties (if they are de-registered),” Mahathir said.

“I’m sure PKR and Amanah would give places for them, but we can’t, because we are a Malay party,” Mahathir said.

He then pointed to DAP member Zaid Ibrahim seated next to him, saying in jest, “He can, he wrote a book called ‘Saya juga Melayu’ (I am also Malay).”

The former prime minister also said that while there were those who were against racism, the fact was that the Malays still had such a mindset.

Hence, for PPBM and PH to succeed, they have to cater to the wishes of all segments in the country.

“We are not interested in each party’s own objectives. We are interested in what the people want.

“Today, what the people want is to get rid of (Prime Minister) Najib (Razak). And on that point, all four parties agree,” he said.

Asked if PH would work towards changing the Malay mindset should it form the next government, Mahathir said yes but warned it would not happen “overnight”.

“It takes a long time for people to lose their suspicions.”

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