: Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has claimed that the number of members of Parliament in favour of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) has now surpassed the original count after more expressed confidence in Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as the Prime Minister.
Without disclosing the exact numbers, Ahmad Zahid, who is also UMNO President, said the numbers were enough to set up a new government as confirmed on February 29 by the Istana Negara.
"UMNO and the Barisan Nasional (BN) must be strengthened, the Muafakat Nasional (of UMNO and PAS) must be strengthened, as well as the new coalition due to the big challenge ahead when the Parliament meets on May 18.
"PN must command solid majority including getting the support from MPs who want to join the government, horse trading is being actively carried out by the opposition," he said in his opening speech during the four branches of Bagan Datuk UMNO Division conferences, at the Bagan Datuk UMNO Complex here today.
On March 1, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah has appointed Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as the eighth prime minister in accordance with Article 40 (2) (a) and Article 43 (2) (a) of the Federal Constitution.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also the BN chairman, said the PN should avoid feeling strong and comfortable because in the political landscape, the coalition was still new and fragile, so all parties must stay united.
He said he had discussion with Muhyiddin about the direction of PN and said the new government must have a road map to clearly state the policy and the implementation of government's programmes.
The new economic stimulus packages and policies should be announced by PN soon to replace the ones introduced by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government.
He said the people especially Muslims wanted some issues including the Lembaga Tabung Haji (TH) and Felda management to be resolved immediately apart from the assistance to the people in facing the high cost of living should be worked out as soon as possible.
"Assistance for the people must be well-organised and hastened so that the people can enjoy various subsidies again, while the fate of the universities and higher learning institutions need to be taken care of, particularly, the borrowers of the National Higher Education Fund (PTPTN)," he said. - BERNAMA