Dr M: I am being treated like a criminal for speaking my mind

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Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has complained that he is being treated like a common criminal for voicing his opinion.

The former prime minister said he was a law-abiding citizen who merely spoke his mind.

“Over the last few years, I have had my statements recorded by police at least ten times.

“Once you become a Tun, you will be investigated.

Bernama

“There are many who are not Tuns but who are doing wrong, some of them are even mentioned in the Pandora Papers but no action is being taken,” he told reporters at the Yayasan Kepimpinan Perdana in Putrajaya on Tuesday (Jan 23).

He questioned if he was allowed to speak at all.

“Our country is supposed to have freedom of speech. This is my opinion. Others make even more racist statements, but it was okay. But when I say something, it cannot be accepted,” he said while adding that he was informed 18 people had lodged reports over his recent interview with an Indian TV channel.

Dr Mahathir said during his session with investigators today, he was asked a total of 19 questions.

“There were some questions that I answered while others I simply responded that I would answer in court.

“They (police) even showed me a 30-minute clip of my interview and asked me if I could see anything wrong with my statement, but I answered them that I saw nothing wrong with it,” he said.

Recently, he claimed that the Indian community is not completely loyal to Malaysia as they are still tied to their country of origin, in an exclusive interview with Thanthi TV.

Earlier, Dr Mahathir joined hundreds gathered outside Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur to submit a memorandum to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong seeking his intervention concerning a “failed” government.

Without furnishing evidence or statistics, he claimed that the high cost of living and economic situation is driving Malays to commit suicide and murder.

“There are those who killed their mothers, who killed their parents because they lost their source (of income) and are very pressured,” he said.

Four NGOs claiming to represent Islam and Malays submitted the memorandum. However, the names of the organisations were not disclosed.

The memorandum claimed that Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s government failed to “safeguard the welfare of Malaysia and its people as well as the sovereignty of Islam and Malays”.

The memorandum also stated that Malay rulers were insulted due to the allegation that the opposition attempted to bribe the monarch to engineer a coup against the government.

Apart from this, it also claimed the courts are encroaching on the role of Malay rulers as the head of Islamic affairs in their respective states.

Also present was Pembela Tanah Air coordinator Badrul Hisham Shaharin, who is popularly known as Chegubard.

Chegubard blamed “AZD” (Anwar, Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and DAP) for being the source of racial tensions and political instability.

He also accused the government of using MACC and the Communications and Multimedia Commission to clamp down on dissent.

Meanwhile, Dr Mahathir says he is prepared to be investigated by the authorities.

He refuted a statement by Anwar that it was hard to investigate those with the Tun title.

“There is nothing challenging about investigating me. I’m just a Tun. If they put me in jail, I will just die in jail. If I’m dead, there is no need to investigate me. There won’t be many problems,” he said.

He added that his bank accounts, Inland Revenue Board statements and others could be easily accessed by enforcement agencies.

He also claimed that the investigation was done to scare those who did not support the government.

“Of course, I am worried. My son told me he received a notice to disclose all his transactions since he was a 20-year-old,” he said, adding that Mirzan was told to provide a 42-year history of transactions within 30 days.

On Jan 20, businessman Mirzan Mahathir was issued a notice to declare his assets, both inside and outside the country, within 30 days.

The notice was issued in relation to “revelations” in the Panama Papers and the Pandora Papers.

Asked if the probe was “revenge” by the Prime Minister, Dr Mahathir replied that he was not sure.

“When I became prime minister for a second time in 2018, Anwar was released.