MAHATHIR’S REPENTANCE: ‘IN MY 70 YEARS OF POLITICS, I’VE NEVER SEEN A RALLY AS BIG AS THIS’ – DR M SALUTES BERSIH SUPPORTERS’ COURAGE TO STAND UP TO ‘THIEF’ NAJIB
Dr Mahathir urged Malaysians to reject a government that oppresses its people and uses laws to silence criticism.
The man who — during his tenure as prime minister, was accused of curtailing civil liberties — said the attendance of thousands of ordinary Malaysians at the street demonstration showed that people wanted a change in government.
“Thousands have showed up to express their dissatisfaction…I thank you for coming even under difficult circumstances.
“This is our struggle. We want a government which does not abuse the law,” Dr Mahathir said in a soft but clear voice to the thousands of Bersih supporters in front of KLCC here.
The former prime minister said the use of certain laws against key opposition and Bersih leaders ahead of the rally showed that the current government is undemocratic and does not listen to its people.
“I’ve been in politics for 70 years. I’ve never seen this big a rally in all those years,” he said.
Maria Chin Abdullah, head of polls reform group Bersih 2.0, was detained today under an anti-terrorism law, the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012. Several other pro-Bersih activists and opposition politicians were arrested last night, purportedly to prevent rioting.
Meanwhile, according to Malaysiakini:
5.20pm: Jalan Ampang, between KLCC and Wisma Equity – Dr Mahathir Mohamad stresses that Bersih participants are here for peace, unlike red-shirts leader Jamal Md Yunos.
“We are not Jamal, who got punched in the nose and cried….,” he says.
He also expresses gratitude to the participants, who were willing to turn up despite the current situation.
“We no longer live under democracy, but a kleptocracy -a nation ruled by thieves,” he claims.
Also present was Mahathir’s wife, Dr Siti Hasmah Ali.
At 90, Hasmah braves the rain for the people
Muhyiddin: The future belongs to the young
Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) president Muhyiddin Yasin urges the people to vote for change in the coming election to put an end to BN and Umno.
“Our future, is for everyone. It is not for me, I am old, but you are young…,” he says.