Enter the Edge, snippets of the article “Lest we forget” in Malaysian Insider:
Despite Dr Mahathir’s selective memory, he cannot absolve himself from the sacking of the Lord President and two other judges in 1988. Nor should he forget that it was he who put in place the rule that anyone who wants to contest the party president’s position must receive nominations from at least 30 per cent of the divisions.
The paper said that contrary to assertions by the former PM, Umno tends to have a crisis every 10 years. There was the quarrel with Musa Hitam, the jailing and sacking of Anwar Ibrahim and now he is attacking Abdullah.
“Three crises in three decades and the central figure in each of them is Mahathir. Mahathir ‘mudah lupa’ but we hope the rest of the Malaysians will not forget that easily,‘’ said the editorial.
The paper upped the ante in an accompanying article. Its writer noted that Dr Mahathir challenged the authorities to get foreign agencies to investigate him.
“Perhaps it is high time Abdullah called his bluff and launched an international investigation into all the alleged misdeeds of Mahathir during his 22 years in office, with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim as his first key witness,‘’ said the writer.
On 8 April, the ex-PM calls all these “frivolous, unwarranted and stupid“.
Over the weeks I hear a few calls for people to “leave Mahathir alone”. Some said, we would, but the man had opened up old wounds with his incessant diatribe against Abdullah (not that I support the man – he must leave, and he must do so along with UMNO).
But why should we and can we forget Mahathir? A leader will and must be accountable for his past mistakes, especially one who have a selected memory and who had hardly any ‘regrets’ over his decisions, no matter how it had affected the lives of others (read: ISA and Anwar Ibrahim)… except only one – (oh yeah) that of selecting PM Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to be his replacement. Yet, that he did for his own interest – so that Abdullah could carry on his “legacy” and later install his “gratitude” Najib Tun Razak as the next PM.
He swears, spit on and scandalises Abdullah, but Mahathir in his 22 years as PM had problems with all his deputies, from Musa Hitam to Anwar Ibrahim. I bet you even if Tengku Razaleigh (former finance minister) and Najib (God forbid) were prime minister, he’ll have problems, too. Woe betide if you cancel any of his pet projects. All hell breaks loose if you don’t continue his L-E-G-A-C-Y!
I grew up witnessing how government institutions, especially the judiciary, crumbled apart, one by one, in Mahathir’s hand. I witnessed how some families suffered when their parents were nabbed and thrown into detention at the height of the ISA. I witnessed with sadness how my honest and hardworking cousin Chong Cheng Hai (now at the SUN) lost his job (he was at the STAR at the time) when the paper shut down as a result of a controversial story; and how my reporter friends suffer under the media that became most restrictive during Mahathir’s time and continue to do so now.
And Mahathir is Father of Malaysia? Father of Modernisation? I do not wish to have a father like this.
A father doesn’t tear down the integrity of his family nor deprive his children’s families by throwing their parents out of job. Only an abusive and intolerant father will punish you beyond what is reasonable then turn around and buy you sweets to make you think he is worthy of being your father and that you must forgive him. Oh yes, I know so well how abusive fathers behave after having worked at the Women’s Crisis Centre.
And that is what Mahathiby did, ripped our dignity part by part, then spend billions to make us think that we are wealthy in the eyes of the world. Alas, where have all the ringgits gone?
It seems we forget easily or are we so easily bribed by just a few phallic symbols like the twin towers? Don’t set your standards so low that you think success means more supermarkets, more universities, more cars on the road and more skyscrappers.
But over the weeks, I have also heard clamours for Mahathir to be taken to task for his misdeeds. Other than the edge, several has joined the bandwagon. They include: Karpal Singh: Apologise to Judges; Param Cumarasamy: Probe Mahathir’s alleged misdeeds ; Ezam Mohamad Nor or Gerak: Call for action against Mahathir ; Gerakan: Blames Mahathir for crisis in Judiciary; Zainuddin Maidin, former information minister: Thorn in the flesh and UMNO members themselves as in Dr. Mahathir, stop the attacks.
It’s not true that Malaysians mudah lupa (forgets easily). It’s only true that Mahathir mudah lupa, and he wants you to forget.