Monday, July 4, 2022

Now, Mahathir threatens legal action against ‘compulsive liar’ Zahid

The former prime minister says he will take court action against the Umno president if he does not retract or furnish proof of his claim that his name is in fact 'Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty'.

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Dr Mahathir Mohamad today lashed out at Ahmad Zahid Hamidi over the latter’s claim several years ago about his Indian heritage, calling him a “compulsive liar” even as the Umno president launches a defamation suit against him over his statement that Zahid had sought his help to interfere in his ongoing court cases.

In a statement, Mahathir said Zahid’s decision to sue him was an effort to cover up his lies through the legal process.

“Honestly, I have grown tired of Zahid’s attitude,” he added. “Zahid is a liar. Those in the West would say a ‘compulsive liar’.

“During the campaign for the 14th general election, he claimed that my original identity card put my name as ‘Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty’. He also claimed that my blue IC with this name was sent to him by the director-general of the National Registration Department.

“I waited for Zahid to show evidence of this but there was nothing even after the election ended.”

Claiming that Zahid had sought to challenge his eligibility to lead Umno, other Malay parties and the Malays as a whole, Mahathir said he had never denied being of Indian heritage.

“But the fact is that my birth certificate and IC both say ‘Mahathir bin Mohamad’,” he added.

Mahathir said he had never liked using the courts as he understood that in politics, there would be those who acted without boundaries or limits.

“But this time I think that I need to act, because the attitude of this liar Zahid is truly disgusting and cannot be left unchallenged,” he said.

“Not only has it damaged my reputation, his lies to those who support Umno as well as the other Malays for the sake of wishing to stay in power are very damgerous.

“I am considering taking legal action over Zahid’s lies that have defamed me,” he added.

“I challenge Zahid to show proof of my identity which disputes my status as a Malay. If he does not apologise and retract his claim, I will take court action.”

Zahid, who faces 47 charges of criminal breach of trust, corruption and money laundering in relation to funds from charity outfit Yayasan Akalbudi, sued Mahathir for defamation on April 20.

He accused Mahathir of damaging his name and reputation after the former prime minister revealed in February that Zahid had come to ask for his help in having the corruption charges against him dropped.

Zahid also filed a similar suit against Muhyiddin Yassin over allegations that he had asked for help to resolve or postpone the trial of his criminal cases.

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