PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob owes Umno an explanation for the purported agreement between him and Perikatan Nasional chairman Muhyiddin Yassin on the appointment of a deputy prime minister, said a senior party leader.
The leader, who declined to be named, said there was growing angst over the matter after photos of the 10-point agreement dated Aug 17, 2021, began making the rounds on social media.
However, one page of the agreement, containing three points, is not being shared on social media.
According to the documents, PN pledged its support for Ismail as prime minister and, in return, Bersatu was to be given the post of deputy prime minister and Muhyiddin made minister mentor.
The authenticity of the documents, bearing the signatures of Ismail, Muhyiddin, PAS secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan and Umno’s Annuar Musa, have yet to be verified.
“We (Umno) were not told of any agreement he (Ismail) had with any party. As far as Umno is aware, nothing was promised to anyone,” the Umno source told FMT.
“Many, if not most, of our MPs would not have signed statutory declarations (SDs) supporting Ismail if they had known of such an agreement.”
The leader said there was “real anger” within Umno and growing expectations for Ismail to explain the matter to the party leadership, especially since he had not been attending party meetings.
“It could well be that he is just stringing Bersatu along. But the party should not be in the dark.”
Another Umno source said the leaked documents were a “very serious issue”.
“If the documents are authentic, then disciplinary action can be taken. There are people in the party who believe both Ismail and Annuar can be suspended.
“But I don’t think anything will happen though. There is no point in acting against Ismail or Annuar as they do not enjoy the support of the Umno grassroots.”
The source said that at this point in time, the focus was on the next general election (GE15) and there was no need to “rock the boat”.
Meanwhile, another source described Ismail’s “agreement” with PN as “normal political manoeuvring”.
“I don’t think Ismail had any intention to ‘deliver’ on the agreement. If he wanted to, he would have done it earlier when he was in a much stronger position to do so.
“I believe he has played Bersatu out. In that sense, it is good for Ismail because it smashes the notion that he is ‘Muhyiddin’s man’,” the source said.