KUCHING, Dec 23: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak urges Sarawakians to reject Mahathirism because the idea behind it was for one man with much power over everything.
During the Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) triennial delegates conference closing ceremony at the party’s headquarters here earlier today, he took a potshot at former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for trying to become the Prime Minister again, saying that a man of 92 years of age would be physiologically unfit to even become a sane politician.
“I’m the prime minister that has visited Sarawak more times in my eight years (as prime minister) than someone who had served for 22 years. That person is now 92-years-old. How would it make sense for a 92-year-old man to offer himself as the next prime minister?
“Even in Zimbabwe they don’t want a 90-over-year-old President,” said the Barisan Nasional (BN) president, referring to former Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe. Mugabe served as the country’s Prime Minister from 1980 to 1987 and then as President from 1987 to 2017 after he resigned due to impeachment pressure.
Najib continued with his swipe against Mahathir, saying that during the latter’s time, the now Sabah’s Kota Marudu MP Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili was detained under the now defunct Internal Security Act (ISA) for two months in 1991 just because he raised up the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
“Dr Sim brought it up earlier, I didn’t put him under ISA. In fact ISA is no more. Because I believe that to be a stronger Malaysia, you must recognise the rights of the people in Sarawak itself.
“What is due to them we give it back to them. I said if we have inadvertently or deliberately taken those rights, we give them back, no problem. Provided, there is a red line, no talk about secession and support BN. Only two conditions.
“Why should we worry if you have more rights? It’s good for the country, and I can sleep well at night. And when I come to Sarawak, people of Sarawak will receive me well and support BN,” he said.
Najib said the country would not be able to move forward if Mahathirism comes into power because of its ideal ‘one man with all the power’. He said Malaysia would need new ideas from new leaders if it wants to move forward, including having good economic ties with other developed countries such as China.
“Then he (Mahathir) had to criticise that idea, accusing the government of selling off Malaysia’s sovereignty to China, where in truth, it is to form strong economic ties with China for mutual benefit. China is a huge market and we must be part of the global value chain to be able to be a developed nation,” he explained. — DayakDaily