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'No country for poor people': Mahathir hits out at govt again

The former prime minister says he is now unable to speak about the challenges faced by the Malays even in his own country.

Staff Writers
2 minute read
Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Former leader Dr Mahathir Mohamad today hit out at the authorities whom he said had blocked him multiple times from speaking out about the troubles of the Malays, days after accusing Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim of trying to silence dissent.

In a statement laced with his trademark sarcasm, Mahathir said he had become afraid as he was now unable to speak about the plight of the Malays in his own country.

"We can't even meet," he added. "There is no place. Everywhere has rejected us. Four times we were rejected 'on the instructions of the higher-ups'.

"We wanted to launch the Malay Proclamation without talking about other races, and it was called sedition. 

"I am afraid. Can I even use social media like this? Or will I be accused of sedition?"

Mahathir's statement today came more than a week after he said Anwar had been behind the sudden cancellation of the Malay Proclamation event meant to be held in Kuala Lumpur.

He said among others that the media was being "filtered", and that anything negative about the government had been disallowed. 

Anwar had responded by launching a thinly veiled attack on his one-time mentor at the recent PKR congress. 

"Some people, after 22 years plus 22 months in power, talk about the Malays having lost everything – property, shares. How would they not if you monopolised them for yourself, your family and your children? Now that you've lost power, you talk about the masses," Anwar had said.

Mahathir however said that the Malays fell into a state of poverty after he stepped down as prime minister, adding that he had tried to correct the situation when he assumed the top office for a second tenure under the Pakatan Harapan government.

Speaking today, he said he apologised if his claim was off-track. 

"If it is wrong for me to complain about the plight of the Malays, never mind," he said. 

"I won't complain anymore. Okaylah. Poor people don't need a country. Don't do anything. That is sedition." 

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