Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who is being investigated for criticising Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his administration, said he would not give up his efforts to remove the prime minister.
The 90-year-old, who is the longest-serving prime minister of the country, said he believed in doing what was worthwhile.
“I always believe that when you fail, you get up, and try again and again. It is whether what we have been doing is worthwhile or not,” he told reporters at a Proton event in Shah Alam today.
Dr Mahathir said the problem was still Najib’s administration and he would continue to push for his resignation.
“I still emphasise the need for Najib to step down. Everything goes back to him,” he said when asked what he would do next.
Dr Mahathir had been critical of Najib and his administration, which had been tarnished and tested by financial scandals, namely debt-ridden state investment firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad, the RM2.6 billion “donation” deposited into his personal accounts, a slow economy and weakening ringgit.
He had called for Najib to resign and even attended last August’s Bersih 4 rally, where he alleged that several Umno leaders were corrupt and they have not said anything against Najib’s administration that affected by controversies.
His recent blog post this month slamming Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali over his decision not to charge the prime minister, and saying the country’s top prosecutor had no credibility, has landed him in a criminal defamation investigation.
Dr Mahathir said the country’s laws were not implemented properly and asked if the administration was part of a democracy when people who spoke up and criticised landed in trouble.
“The existing law is not being implemented properly. New laws are then formulated for another purpose and people get arrested and tried.
“I know that during my time we had the ISA (Internal Security Act) but I did not use it to harass people, who criticised me. Only when they did something to the country,” he said.
“If you criticise the government now, you are going to be detained, questioned and put on trial. If you can’t criticise, then where is the democracy?
“The law is applied differently depending who you are. So somebody has to say something. I have to say it because I want the country to have a good reputation.”
Dr Mahathir said Malaysia’s reputation was now rotten and that it was shameful when people asked what was happening to the country.
“People ask me what has happened to your country? It’s shameful. All because of one man’s leadership.” – Malaysian Insider