Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad has depicted DAP’s insistence on supporting opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim as meaning that the party thinks it can control him.
Using former Perak Menteri Besar Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin as an example, Mahathir claimed the DAP used the former as it has the majority of seats and the MB allowed the extension of the land lease there (at new villages) indefinitely from 99 years previously.
“The DAP’s insistence on supporting Anwar is merely to gain Malay support,” he said.
“Why not Abdul Hadi (Awang) PAS or the great (DAP chairperson) Karpal Singh? He (Karpal) has fought for so long and maybe he should be the PM. You know, those who become PM will have the title ‘Tun’ and maybe we can call Karpal ‘Tun Karpal’ and Tun Anwar,” he quipped.
Mahathir said the apparent move by PAS to have Hadi as PM shows that there is infighting among Pakatan Rakyat even before they gain power.
The longest-serving prime minister was asked about the PAS Ulama wing proposal during the recent muktamar to have Abdul Hadi as PM.
However, Abdul Hadi was reported to have been coy about answering the call, saying Islamic teachings forbid him from seeking leadership positions.
“We see it as a position with heavy responsibilities... What is important is for us to take over Putrajaya first,” said the PAS president.
In another development, Anwar yesterday said it was not a problem for him if Abdul Hadi becomes PM.
Despite this, DAP’s secretary-general Lim Guan Eng was reported yesterday as insisting that Anwar becomes PM .
Mahathir was speaking to reporters after launching a fund to assist the people of Gaza who are suffering from attacks by the Israelis, which had resulted in more than 100 civilian deaths.
What is Anwar's stand on Gaza?
The former premier also asked Anwar what is his stand over the attacks in Gaza as he seemed to support the Jews.
Saying Anwar needs the support from the Jews, Mahathir said that was why Anwar supported George Soros ( left ) and others and that is why the opposition leader supported Israel.
“We will support the good things done but what is his (Anwar's) stand on Israel attack using sophisticated weapon? The atrocities committed by Israel is highly unusual as there is never any country able to violate all the laws and be backed by the United States, an ally which it controls”.
Asked on his message to Anwar's supporters, Mahathir said they should not be “ taksub (blindly)” fanatic in following the leader, but should think of themselves.
He said there are many who had left Anwar, but there are others who still regard him and like to listen to what he said, following the opposition leader blindly.
“This is assabiyah (blindly following) without thinking. I hope Malaysians are not blind in following such a leade. As a French political philosopher once said, when given the power to vote, use it with knowledge and not vote blindly as this will destroy the country,” said the former premier.
Israel continue to violate laws
Earlier in his speech when launching the fund, Mahathir condemned that no action is being taken against Israel, as it is backed by the United States.
“Israel is attacking others on the premise of a pre-emptive attack to protect themselves. However, they are attacking the Palestinians with sophisticated weapons. This is compared to the Palestinians who may be armed with minute rocket launchers. What pre-emptive strike or danger they are talking about?” he said.
“Israel has been using the same ground to attack the Arab countries surrounding it and yet no action has been taken. They are not attacking armies but civilians and children,” he said.
Mahathir said Malaysians may not be able to send an army to Israel to fight the atrocities as in Bosnia as Israel is backed by the US and United Kingdom, which are united in defending it.
However, he said by channeling aid in the form of food, medical and building supplies, it could be used by the people to rebuild their lives.
Also present was Perdana Global Peace Foundation chairperson Norian Mai, who said that it had so far in the past collected RM500,000 worth of water, and RM300,000 in medical supplies and RM100,000 in building materials.
Mahathir said they had a problem in shipping the supplies due to the strict conditions imposed. However, Egypt had since opened up.