PUTRAJAYA: Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad reiterated today that he will not be contesting in the next general election (GE14).
“But if he (Padang Rengas MP Nazri Aziz) would like to have a public debate, that, we can do. We can debate about 1MDB, the RM2.6 billion in Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal accounts, and even BMF,” Mahathir said.
The Bumiputera Malaysia Finance (BMF) scandal was revived when declassified US Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) documents linked the Mahathir administration to some US$1 billion (RM4.5 billion) in losses in the 1980s.
These losses were the result of bad loans made by BMF to several shady companies including units of Hong Kong-based Carrian Holdings Ltd. BMF was a wholly-owned subsidiary of the now defunct Bank Bumiputera.
A royal commission of inquiry set up to probe the scandal ended without any one being prosecuted.
Mahathir was commenting on rumours triggered by Nazri’s challenge last week to contest against him in the latter’s constituency.
Nazri had also told news portal Malaysiakini last night that he knew of Mahathir’s plan to come to his constituency on March 25.
In response, Mahathir told Nazri not to roll out the red carpet because he was just an ordinary man.
“He doesn’t need to waste money on a red carpet. I’m just an ordinary man, I can walk barefoot even.
“Use the money for the red carpet on someone else,” Mahathir said in a press conference held at the Perdana Leadership Foundation here today.
Nazri had last week, challenged Mahathir, who is the founding chairman of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) to contest against him in Padang Rengas.
Mahathir responded to this by throwing a counter-dare to Nazri, to contest against him for the Langkawi parliamentary seat. The former Kubang Pasu MP, was last month appointed Langkawi PPBM division chief. – FMT