Mahathir blames 'selfish' PPBM members for huge by-election loss

Mahathir hit out at infighting in PPBM.

Sulaiman Daud| December 03, 01:57 PM

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad hit out at members of his own party, the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM), for being "selfish".

Speaking at a youth wing fundraiser on Dec. 2, Mahathir slammed the infighting within his own party, reported the Malay Mail.

Internal infighting

He said that some members were so concerned with hanging on to their positions that they were trying to eliminate others who could mount a challenge.

According to Mahathir, this was a big reason why the PPBM lost by such a wide margin in the recent Tanjung Piai by-election.

According to Free Malaysia Today, he said:

"If we think this party gives us the chance to reach our own dreams, I’m confident that not just the individual but the party will also lose.

As a political party, we must remember that the fight is for the party, not ourselves. If we fight for the party, all will enjoy the benefits.

But if we fight for ourselves, the party will not benefit and we will not benefit too."

We lost due to lack of members

Mahathir added that this contributed to the thumping loss of PPBM candidate Karmaine Sardini to Barisan Nasional's (BN) Wee Jeck Seng, as they lacked party members and workers on the ground, according to The Star.

He also said that the party could only succeed if members put it above their own personal ambitions.

PPBM facing troubles raising money

Meanwhile, Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman said that it was difficult for the PPBM to raise money.

During the same fundraiser event, Syed Saddiq said that it was difficult to collect RM5 million (S$1.6 million) in one year, while BN could rely on selling off shares and contributions from the corporate sector that total "millions".

"In Bersatu, to raise RM5 million takes more than one year. This doesn’t mean we should swindle or steal. It is our responsibility to raise funds for the party but never use our individual accounts."

However, Malay Mail reported that the fundraiser managed to raise RM5.12 million (S$1.7 million), which was about five times its original target.

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Top image from Getty Images.