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Date: 07 Dec 1999
Malaysian FM says may not be in new cabinet
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 6 (AFP) - Malaysia's finance minister said Monday he may not be part of the country's new cabinet, expected to be formed later this week following the ruling coalition's election victory.
Daim Zainuddin told the state Bernama news agency that Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad had yet to offer him the finance minister post.
"With the new government, I may not be there," he said.
Asked whether he would accept the post in the new line-up, Daim quipped he was not in a position to decline, since he had not been asked.
Daim was finance minister in the 1980s and was brought back into the cabinet last year as special functions minister overseeing economic recovery.
He was reappointed finance minister earlier this year, taking over from then-finance minister and deputy premier Anwar Ibrahim, who was sacked and detained in September 1998.
Daim dismissed talk of disagreements within the government over whether or not to ease a program of forced bank mergers, saying the move was made by the National Economic Action Council, of which he is executive director.
Asked if there would be any changes in the 2000 budget, Daim said the budget was "our promise to the people. We honour our promises."
Parliament was dissolved before it could approve next year's budget.
In November 29 polls, Mahathir's National Front coalition won 148 out of 193 parliamentary seats, giving it the two-thirds majority it needs to amend the constitution.
The premier is expected to name his new cabinet later this week and include a host of new ministers.
+ Apakah ini bermaksud bahawa Ku Li akan muncul kembali dalam kabinet? Biasalah MM nak check Si Dollah Badawi dan Najib menjelang. Gejala bangsat ini kan wujud dalam UMNO?