Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail today hit out at former Dewan Rakyat speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia for downplaying the 1MDB scandal on the campaign trail for the Sandakan by-election.
She said that even if some in the constituency may not have heard of the 1MDB scandal, they are now paying the price for it.
“1MDB is the biggest scandal in the world. We have a deficit in our budget (because of it), which we could have used in Sabah or Sandakan.
“By saying that, he is trying to absolve himself from 1MDB.
“It is not the right thing to say and it is irresponsible,” she told reporters.
The deputy prime minister was in Sandakan campaigning for Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate Vivian Wong.
Pandikar made a surprise appearance in Pulau Berhala yesterday and scoffed at Harapan raising BN-era scandals in its campaign.
“Who here has heard of the East Coast Rail Link? What is 1MDB?” he asked a ceramah audience, some of whom shook their heads in response.
Pandikar was campaigning for Parti Bersatu Sabah – once part of Sabah BN, and now PH’s main rival in the coming polls.
His appearance for PBS raised eyebrows, as he had previously pledged his support for PH and ally Warisan upon quitting Umno. Warisan, together with Upko, form the ruling government in Sabah.
Despite his pledge, however, Pandikar has not affiliated himself to any party since his exit from Umno.
When serving as the Dewan Rakyat speaker, he had prevented debate on the 1MDB issue, citing sub judice.
The Petaling Jaya South MP at the time, Hee Loy Sian, tried to sue Pandikar for “unlawful” conduct because of the continued rejections in 2017 but the courts rejected this.
Meanwhile, DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said Pandikar has “come out of the woodwork” after abandoning Umno but is still denying the reality of the 1MDB scandal.
Commenting on Pandikar’s appearance in the PBS campaign for the Sandakan by-election, Lim noted that the former asked voters in Pulau Berhala if they have even heard of the 1MDB scandal.
Lim called Pandikar’s remarks as the continuation of his dereliction while the latter had been “Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1MDB Speaker of Parliament”.
“The 13th Parliament could have performed its patriotic duty to save Malaysia from being condemned by the world as a global kleptocracy, but you stood in the way and did Najib’s every bidding.
“But horror of horrors, you now tell the voters of Pulau Berhala that you have never heard of the 1MDB scandal!” Lim said in a statement today.
The DAP leader also reminded Pandikar that he was among those who quit Umno Sabah and had pledged allegiance to the PH federal government and Warisan state government in Sabah.
Lim said that while Pandikar’s word did not mean anything, the latter should at least begin giving some thought to the damage wrought on Malaysia by the 1MDB scandal.