Did Najib kill Muhyiddin like how Dr Mahathir killed Anwar? Najib just removed Muhyiddin as the Deputy Prime Minister, which is the prerogative of the Prime Minister. And then he stopped there. And this gave Muhyiddin the impression that he is still in the safe zone because Najib does not dare proceed beyond that.
It is not that Najib did not dare go further. He wanted Muhyiddin to go further and walk into his own traps. He wanted Muhyiddin to die at his own hands. And that is what Muhyiddin did and is continuing to do.
Dr Mahathir also miscalculated Najib and the sentiments of the Umno people. He thought that after one year of blasting away regarding 1MDB and the RM2.6 billion Najib’s support base would have whittled away. So Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC (Anti-Najib Campaign) played their trump card in July 2015.
Then Najib made his move after six months of playing bodoh-bodoh sepat. He launched his purge and all those with drawn daggers fell. It was a move that Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC thought Najib would never dare make and even if he did Umno would not stand for it.
But Najib did dare make that move and he made it at the end of July 2015. And Umno did not rise up in protest. Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC miscalculated and they lost. Muhyiddin’s removal as Deputy Prime Minister was a non-event that hardly cause a ripple except for some whimpering and barking.
Then Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC continued their attacks. Their July 2015 plot failed. So they planned the October 2015 plot — Najib’s removal through a vote of no confidence in Parliament. That, too, failed. So they launched the next plan, the plot to remove Najib during the Umno General Assembly in December 2015. And that failed as well. Three attempts and all failures.
Then Najib made his second strike. And that was when Umno removed Mukhriz Mahathir as the Kedah Menteri Besar. But Najib did not want to be the executioner. The Kedah State Secretary prepared Mukhriz’s letter of resignation and the Kedah Royal Council at the behest of HRH the Sultan made him sign it.
So Najib did not sack Mukhriz. Mukhriz resigned. And he resigned by titah or Royal Command. And that was the most brilliant move yet which would go down in history and be remembered for a long time to come.
And then Umno removed Muhyiddin as the party’s number two. Yes, the party, not Najib, removed Muhyiddin.
Strike three. And as they say: three strikes and you are out.
And now Muhyiddin wants to take his case to the Registrar of Societies and challenge his removal. He is even considering going to court. Once that happens it is all over. All those who have taken their case to the RoS or to court have all seen their political careers end up in smoke. G. Palanivel, Anwar Ibrahim, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, are but just some examples.
You hold on to your position through tangible political support. You do not go crying to court or to the RoS to get them to help you hold on to your position. And you do not try garnering intangible political support by getting non-members or the opposition to help keep you in power. And this is what Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC are trying to do.
This is like the Afghan, Libyan or Iraqi governments trying to stay in power with the support of the American forces. It never works because it does not have the support of its own people. Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC, however, think that Lim Kit Siang and the DAP-led Pakatan Harapan can help them oust Najib so that Dr Mahathir and his proxy can grab power.
That is not called tangible political support. That is called intangible political support. Tangible can be measured. Intangible is in the mind. It is not what you see. It is what you think you see. It is a mirage that disappears as you get close.
Thus far Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin and the ANC are doing exactly what Najib wants them to do. And I do not see why that should change. If they continue doing what Najib wants them to do, in time Muhyiddin, Shafie Apdal and Mukhriz are going to see themselves out in the cold. And Najib is not going to do anything to them. They are going to do it to themselves just like how Najib has planned it.
Dr Mahathir played his last card when he resigned. He thought that his resignation would turn the tide. But it did not. In fact, the tide swept him away. Now Dr Mahathir no longer has any card left to play. So now he has to borrow some of the opposition cards to continue playing. But that comes with a price. You make a deal with the devil and the devil will own your soul. And that devil comes in the form of the DAP-led Pakatan Harapan.
(Accessed at http://www.malaysia-today.net/mahathir-muhyiddin-and-the-anc-are-dancing-to-najibs-tune/ , Malaysia Today, blog post dated 4 March'16)