Aug 30, 2009

Tun Mahathir : Stay patriotic

The former prime minister of Malaysia, Tun Mahathir says all Malaysians should stay patriotic even though the current wide spread of the AH1N1 flu virus.

PETALING JAYA: Malaysians should not let the A(H1N1) virus stop them from celebrating the National Day, said former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

“This year’s celebration is not as merry as previous years because of the A(H1N1) flu. There are no big parades at Dataran Merdeka or Putrajaya as usual.

“But all this should not stop us from feeling proud and patriotic towards our country,” he said in his latest blog posting.

Dr Mahathir said he would not be able to attend this year’s National Day celebrations at Dataran Parli-men but would continue to pray for the country’s stability and safety.

“As an ordinary citizen, I will focus my attention on the country’s political, economic and social development and will try to contribute to these areas as much as I can.

“I am confident that ordinary citizens will continue to do the same because they love the country and want to see it progress,” he added.

Dr Mahathir wished all Malaysians a happy 52nd Merdeka and a blessed Ramadan to all Muslims.

Meanwhile, Penang will be holding its state-level National Day celebrations, without the parade, outside the Seberang Prai Municipal Council headquarters in Bandar Perda, Central Seberang Prai at 9am tomorrow.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said that instead of the usual four-hour parade, the event would be shorter this year in view of the Influenza A(H1N1) pandemic.

“We had earlier announced that the parade would be cancelled. But the celebrations will still go on, only it will be a very short one,” he said after flagging off the Anglican Churches Transcom Merdeka Rally 2009 in St Marks Church Butterworth here yesterday.

Although the state government is not organising a National Day countdown, several private establishments are going ahead with the countdown to the celebrations.

The Queensbay Mall on Penang Island will hold a concert and fireworks display while a National Day countdown gathering will be held at Auto City in Juru on the mainland from 6pm today. A 200-inch Sky-TV, the first of its kind in the country, will be launched by Penang State Tourism Development, Culture, Arts, and Heritage Committee chairman Law Heng Kiang.

Aug 21, 2009

Tun Mahathir likens Rohaizat candidacy to BN self-sabotage

Former Umno president Dr Mahathir Mohamad today contributed to the mounting pressure on the party's candidate for the Permatang Pasir by-election Rohaizat Othman. Asked what he thought about the matter, the 83-year-old statesman zeroed in on Rohaizat's alleged second wife. "I was told he is accused of having two wives, but he said 'No'. Then someone showed the picture (of the woman). I don't know if such a person is qualified to be come an elected representative or not.

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 21 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed took a dig today at Barisan National’s (BN) choice of candidate for the Permatang Pasir by-election by pointing out that he was not sure if Rohaizat Othman — a disbarred lawyer — was qualified to run for office.

The former prime minister said that he was also informed Rohaizat was accused of having two wives.

“If you give someone a good reason to sabotage you, then it will be easy to be sabotaged and it will be your fault,” quipped Dr. Mahathir.

Umno has come under fire recently since its chosen candidate Rohaizat Othman was discovered to have been found guilty of misconduct by the Bar Council after failing to return RM161,000 belonging to the Penang Rubber Smallholders Cooperation.

The former lawyer has been on the defensive ever since the discovery was made public, blaming Pakatan Rakyat for attempting to discredit him personally.

However, Rohaizat has yet to respond to allegations made by his former partner Yusri Ishak against him.

Umno maintains that Pakatan Rakyat is trying to “assassinate” the character of their chosen candidate.

Rohaizat is facing Penang PAS state commissioner Mohd. Salleh Man in a straight fight for the state seat in the by-election on August 25.

Aug 10, 2009

Tun Mahathir : Pakatan sure to lose Selangor

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is very sure that the current Pakatan Rakyat-led Selangor government will fall back to the hands of BN.

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 10 - Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is already ringing the death knell for the Pakatan Rakyat-led Selangor government.

He said the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) partners' many ideological differences which often lead to open disputes is evidence that the opposition alliance is only destined to split.

Dr Mahathir also said that PR component parties like the DAP and PAS are merely errand boys to realise the agenda of PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim whom he said has managed so far to deceive and conceal his true intentions from the two.

“How can they work together when they have so many opposing ideas, only Anwar has succeeded in deceiving the two parties to push his own agenda ... DAP and PAS are being used by him,” he told a press conference here today.

The statement was made in reference to the open squabbling in Selangor involving top leaders from PAS and DAP over the beer sales issue. Selangor PAS chief and executive councillor (exco) Datuk Hassan Ali blasted DAP exco Ronnie Liu's interference in the matter and demanded his resignation.

The PR leadership's seemingly castrated attempts to discipline their ranks and contain their quarrels have provided their rivals Umno with the opportunity to drive a wedge between them.

Selangor Umno chief and party president Datuk Seri Najib Razak's recent declaration that he wanted to regain control over the state, the richest in Malaysia, has added to the speculation of an Umno-BN conspiracy for a takeover.

Mahathir, who is becoming more and more critical of Najib's rule after practising “abstinence” in the past, was quick to point out that PR's internal problems won't make it easier for the current Umno chief to win Selangor again.

He said only if BN can prove to be a "viable alternative" to PR can the former realistically expect to win back the state.

“The opposition won (in Selangor) not because people like them, they won because people are fed up with the previous leadership of the BN government. They are actually BN supporters who are dissatisfied with the way they were running things,” he said.

“If BN can provide itself as an alternative for PR, BN can win (back Selangor),” added the former premier.

But judging from the strong criticism Mahathir has thrown against the Najib administration, it is unlikely that he believes the ruling coalition he once led is capable – in its present form - of becoming an alternative to PR

Aug 9, 2009

Tun Mahathir : No need to censor political content on Internet

There is no need to censor political content on the Internet, said Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. He said during his tenure as prime minister, he did not censure information from the Internet and hoped the present Government would keep the status quo.

KUALA LUMPUR: Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said yesterday the Internet should not be censored in any way, and it was wrong to do so although some things needed to be disciplined.

"If you are not instigating violence and things like that, I think the Internet should not be censored in any way," he said after his speech at the Third Annual Malaysian Student Leaders Summit here.

He said he had given the undertaking that the government would not censor the Internet when it started the Multimedia Super Corridor years ago.

"That was an undertaking given by me during my time. I don't know whether that will commit the present government."

On Friday, Information Communication and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim said the government was looking to put up an Internet filter to stop access to undesirable websites.

However, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the government had no intention of monitoring and censoring the flow of information through the Internet as the move would not only be ineffective but would also cause public dissatisfaction.

Meanwhile, commenting on the Selangor government's decision yesterday for self-regulation on the sale of alcohol, Dr Mahathir said Malaysia was a multiracial country and people should not curb the other races from doing the things permitted by their race and religion.

"We also should not try to impose one's religious views or values on other religions."

Aug 3, 2009

Tun Mahathir : Street demonstrations not best option

Street demonstrations are not part of Malaysian culture, but something that was introduced by PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, said former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

KUANTAN: Street demonstrations are not part of the Malaysian culture and there are other ways to champion a cause, according to former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

He said yesterday that Parti Keadilan Keadilan Rakyat adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had "introduced" the culture as a "weapon" to protest issues.

There were other options, he said, such as calling for an in-depth review of the Internal Security Act. Taking the protest to the streets was not the best way to pressure the government to review the act.

Dr Mahathir also said any review of the ISA must take into account the prevailing situation.

"All laws should be reviewed from time to time to ensure they are suited to the times. Not all laws can become obsolete," he told reporters after a session of "A moment with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad" here, organised by Mubarak, the association for former elected representatives.

Dr Mahathir was accompanied by his wife, Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali, at the function. Also present was Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob.

Dr Mahathir was commenting on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's statement on Saturday that the government was gathering feedback on the ISA and was preparing to review it.

On the Barisan Nasional's chances in the upcoming Permatang Pasir by-election, the former prime minister said BN could win if it succeeded in regaining the people's support.

"BN's performance in the Manik Urai by-election was good. BN has a chance."