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I don't mind going to prison, says Mahathir

This comes after the former prime minister was questioned by the police over the 'Malay Proclamation' initiative.

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

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today that he does not mind being imprisoned for speaking about the position and future of the Malays, acknowledging that his statements about race and religion are being monitored by the authorities.

"They (the police) can charge me in court, and then I can explain myself. But they say there are laws that allow them to arrest me without having to go to court.

"I am already 98 years old. If I go to jail, it would be tough," he added during a Perikatan Nasional (PN) ceramah in Simpang Jeram, Johor, last night, attended by PN chairman Muhyiddin Yassin and PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang.

Mahathir was earlier questioned by the police over his participation in a press conference on a roundtable discussion related to the "Malay Proclamation" initiative.

He began campaigning for PN in the last six-state elections and called on the Malays to vote for their future.

"I am saddened when the Malays do not vote; it is as if they do not love their country.

"I hope that we go out and vote not for a political party but because we love our race and country," he said.

Mahathir had previously questioned the fate of the Malays under the administration of Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, who had warned against playing up the 3R issues of race, royalty, and religion.

The Simpang Jeram and Pulai by-elections will be held this Saturday, with PN candidate Zulkifli Jaafar going up against Suhaizan Kayat from Pakatan Harapan (PH) and independent candidate Samsudin Mohd Fauzi in Pulai.

In Simpang Jeram, meanwhile, Dr Mazri Yahya from PN will take on PH candidate Nazri Abdul Rahman and independent candidate S Jeganathan.