Former Malaysia DPM Muhyiddin joins forces with opposition on 1MDB roadshow

Malaysian Opposition Leader Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (left) and Former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin (right) during a press conference on July 30, 2016.
Malaysian Opposition Leader Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (left) and Former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin (right) during a press conference on July 30, 2016.PHOTO: EPA

SUBANG JAYA - Former Malaysian deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin will join forces with the opposition Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) on a nationwide roadshow to explain the issues surrounding the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) state fund, The Star reported.

In his first public appearance with PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail on Saturday (July 30), Tan Sri Muhyiddin said the roadshow aimed to focus on rural areas, by breaking down the issues in simpler terms for the public.

"The people would not know the issue and its effects if they are not given detailed explanations on this matter. Not many people understand (economic) terms and graphs. I support this initiative so the people realise what is happening," he told a press conference at the Empire Hotel in Subang Jaya.

Flanked by PKR top leaders, the former deputy prime minister, however, downplayed his involvement with PKR, saying it was a non-issue and that he would support the roadshow.

He was responding to questions on whether the move meant that he would be joining the party.

"Working together is more important than being a member of any political party and this is what our focus should be," he said.

Mr Muhyiddin was sacked by Prime Minister Najib Razak a year ago for raising questions about Datuk Seri Najib's handling of the 1MDB controversy.

He had been widely tipped to be appointed as the opposition's prime minister candidate amid plans proposed by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to set up a new political party that would partner the opposition in a bid to oust Mr Najib over the 1MDB issue.

On Saturday, he brushed off suggestions that he would take over the role of opposition leader from PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

"She is the opposition leader," he said, pointing at Dr Wan Azizah.

Dr Wan Azizah said the party welcomed Mr Muhyiddin's cooperation.

Dr Mahathir has been spearheading a campaign to topple Mr Najib over claims that about US$700 million (S$937 million) found in Mr Najib's private accounts in 2013 was stolen from 1MDB. Mr Najib has maintained that the money in his accounts was a political donation from the Saudi royal family.

Mr Najib has also been under pressure in recent weeks over damaging claims by the United States that US$3.5 billion (S$4.7 billion) was siphoned out of the state fund - whose advisory board was led by Mr Najib until May this year.