Dr Mahathir said an Opposition loss simply means the people do not want them to run the country. (Photo by Hussein Shaharuddin/The Mole)
KUALA LUMPUR: If the Opposition fails to win the Federal Government in the 13th General Election it will be because the Malaysian people do not want them to lead the country, not because the Government has been unfair, says former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Dr Mahathir said today that some quarters had condemned his recent piece on the Bersih 3 rally, and had accused Barisan Nasional of abusing Government authority to ensure it stays in power, an accusation he dismissed because “There is no clear line when authority is exceeded.”
“When a party in power uses government to implement policies, plans or strategies so as to ensure support by the people, can we say it is abuse of Government authority?” he asked.
“On the other hand when the opposition loudly proclaims that they would do things which would gain them public support, are they not making use of Government authority for their popularity?”
Dr Mahathir cited Opposition promises to increase fuel and fertiliser subsidies, abolish PTPTN and increase the petroleum royalties paid to states as examples of how the Opposition is “also making use of Government authority to win support of the voters.”
“Indeed whereas the incumbent has to be cautious as it knows the financial capacity of the Government, the Opposition has no such constraints,” he said. “If it wins it can have all kinds of excuses for not keeping promises.”
“Abuse of Government authority is not confined only to the ruling party. The Opposition is also bent on abusing Government authority,” he said.
“There may be areas for improving the conduct of Malaysian elections,” Dr Mahathir said. “But the fact remains that in Malaysia the Opposition can and have indeed defeated the Government party.”
“If the Opposition fails to win at federal level, it is simply because the people chose not to support them with the required majority,” he said.
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