KUALA LUMPUR: A council for former elected representatives from Malaysia's ruling coalition Barisan Nasional on Thursday (Mar 17) signed its own declaration to reject what they call a movement to overthrow the government.
The Former Elected Representatives Council, known as Mubarak, along with representatives from more than 40 non-governmental organisations said the Citizens' Declaration championed by former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad is undemocratic for wanting to oust prime minister Najib Razak.
The Citizens' Declaration was signed on Mar 4 by opposition and UMNO figures as well as civil society groups to show a lack of confidence in the prime minister following corruption allegations.
Mubarak said it is not a true citizens' declaration, but instead it is an undemocratic movement to overthrow the government, which could lead to chaos in the country.
Mubarak president Abdul Aziz Rahman, who is the former deputy chief minister of Pahang, said the Council felt the declaration is “not the way to ask the Prime Minister to resign”.
“The general election of (2018) will be the declaration of the people, not this declaration of the people made through signatures. We don't follow this ‘Arab Spring’ where you sign by the millions and suddenly you topple the government – we got our own process, the democratic way,” he said.
Those who signed the Citizens' Declaration on Mar 4 include both UMNO and opposition politicians as well as civil society members. They are planning a nationwide roadshow to collect more signatures to prove that the Malaysian people have lost confidence in their prime minister.
At its meeting on Thursday, Mubarak decided to hold its own counter-road show, stressing that the only democratic way for change is through a vote of no confidence in parliament or within the party, or simply through a general election.
"If they're having their roadshow, we can have our own. Forty-three NGOs are with us. So we thought with that, that gives us the backing, the strength,” said Mr Abdul Aziz.
At the meeting, the Former Elected Representatives Council also decided that since Dr Mahathir has quit Mr Najib's party UMNO, it is no longer appropriate for him to remain the patron of Mubarak – a position he has held for more than a decade.