World

Mahathir: Democracy is dead in Malaysia

Former PM rubbishes Mr Najib's claim that bank funds were 'donations'

Malaysia's former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad said that "democracy is dead" in Malaysia due to the handling of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) crisis.

He also said that he is left stumped by all the issues facing the country currently, reported Malay Mail.

"Democracy is dead. It is dead because an elected leader chooses to subvert the institutions of government and make them his instruments for sustaining himself.

"There is no more democracy for anyone to undermine. Certainly talking about 1MDB will not undermine something that no longer exists. If anyone should be questioned by the police, it is Najib," Dr Mahathir said in the latest post on his blog yesterday, referring to Prime Minister Najib Razak.

CLEARED

He claimed that Mr Najib's shake-up of the Cabinet and agencies currently probing the state-owned 1MDB has effectively put the prime minister in the clear of any claims of impropriety.

Dr Mahathir said he found himself unable to respond to questions from people overseas on what is happening to Malaysia.

Similarly, he said he is unable to deflect claims that country is "totally corrupt" or similar to "one of those African or Arab countries".

"I cannot answer truthfully. I cannot lie either. It is embarrassing. And all this is because of the 1MDB and Najib," he said.

Mr Najib announced a Cabinet reshuffle last month which saw the removal of deputy prime minister Muhyiddin and those seen critical of his handling of 1MDB from the federal administration.

Dr Mahathir also raised doubts about the deposit of RM2.6 billion (S$910 million) into Mr Najib's personal account, which Malaysia's anti-graft unit last week said were donations from unnamed Middle Eastern sources and not from 1MDB, reported liberal news portal Malaysiakini.

"Who in the world would donate US$700 million (S$970 million) to the Malaysian prime minister?

"Even Obama could not raise this amount for his presidential bid. It was suggested it was an Arab. Arabs are generous, but not that generous," wrote Dr Mahathir on his blog.

He said the "donation" claim is what people describe as "hogwash or bulls**t."

"Certainly I don't believe it and neither can the majority of Malaysians if we go by the comments on the social media. The world had a good laugh," he said.

Mahathir Mohamadmalaysia1MDBNajib Razak