I will decide on appointment of education minister – Dr Mahathir

PUTRAJAYA, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today that he will decide on the appointment of the new education minister because it is his prerogative.

It will be decided by me because it is my prerogative, he said when asked on the status of the post of education minister following Dr Maszlee Malik's resignation on Jan 2.

Dr Mahathir told a news conference this after chairing a meeting of the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption (JKKMAR) here.

Asked whether Maszlee's resignation was due to his attempts to reopen the King Salman Centre as reported, Dr Mahathir said it had nothing to do with that.

He said there were many reasons that made him feel that it was necessary for Maszlee to resign.

The letter I wrote to him has been made public by some irresponsible people. As you can see, there are many reasons. I'm not saying that he did everything wrong.

There are some of the things that he did which are right, but because of all these other reasons I felt that it is necessary for him to resign; he agreed and he resigned, he said.

At a press conference at the Education Ministry on Jan 2, Maszlee announced his resignation, which took effect the following day.

Following that some quarters alleged that his decision was linked to his purported plans to reopen the King Salman Centre for International Peace in Putrajaya.

The opening of the centre was proposed following a visit by King Salman Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia to Malaysia in 2017 but it was cancelled in August 2018 after Pakatan Harapan took over the federal government.

On his twitter page today, Maszlee said the allegation was untrue because he had never discussed the matter when serving as the education minister and that the centre had nothing to do with the ministry.

Source: Prime Minister's Office of Malaysia