SUBANG: Perkasa and several NGOs gathered at the Skypark Terminal here to welcome the return of former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his wife from the coupleâ€™s brief umrah trip to Mecca.
Their private jet landed at the terminal at 3.50pm, Friday.
The gathering was organised as a show of support for the former premier, who has recently called Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, to step down over allegations surrounding the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and other issues in his administration.
Among those present were former minister and lawyer activist Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, Martabat Jalinan Muhibbah Malaysia (MJMM) president Datuk Abdul Rani Kulup and several bloggers.
The former premier and his wife Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali had flown to Mecca to perform the umrah on May 10.
As the vehicle transporting the two exited the gates of the terminal, Dr Mahathir stepped out to greet those who had shown up.
Perkasa secretary-general Syed Hassan Syed Ali denied that the gathering was part of an agenda to pressure Najib to step down.
He said the NGOs present were not looking to initiate a repeat of 2008, when a similar gathering was held to welcome Dr Mahathir home from an umrah trip, shortly before the resignation of Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as prime minister.
“We are here to welcome home a beloved leader whom we respect. There is no agenda to repeat any past incident.
“We donâ€™t want anything like that to happen. If possible, we want everything to be smooth,” he told reporters.