Anwar: I don’t have regrets working with Mahathir

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said his reconciliation with former nemesis Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was a difficult and painful decision, but one he did not regret making.

Dr Mahathir sacked Anwar as his deputy in 1998 and the latter was later convicted on charges of sodomy and abuse of power.

However, it was Dr Mahathir who eventually helped secure the royal pardon for Anwar after he was sworn in as the seventh prime minister.

KUALA LUMPUR: PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said his reconciliation with former nemesis Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was a difficult and painful decision, but one he did not regret making.

In an interview with British state broadcaster BBC, Anwar said when Dr Mahathir first approached him in September 2016 to propose working together, many including his family could not see the logic in doing so.

“When I was in court, I was still in prison, he came up to me respectfully and said ‘we had a problem, we discovered this country is going to the dogs,” he said.

“I said okay, I was polite and non-committal, I gave him a good Asian smile and that was tough, but my daughters were crying because they could not comprehend it.”

He recounted that when the two leaders first reunited after nearly two decades of enmity, his daughter Permatang Pauh MP Nurul Izzah Anwar refused to greet Dr Mahathir and had to be coaxed by him to do so.

“During the first meeting, she came in to the witness room 10 minutes after my initial discussion with Mahathir, she walked across, did not look or greet Mahathir, embraced me and sat down,” said Anwar.

“I had to blink and appealing to my dear loving daughter ‘can you please greet the man’; she nodded and said ‘hello, sir’, then sat down.”

Dr Mahathir sacked Anwar as his deputy in 1998 and the latter was later convicted on charges of sodomy and abuse of power.

When Anwar was accused of sodomy a second time nearly 10 years later, Dr Mahathir had met with accuser Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

However, it was Dr Mahathir who eventually helped secure the royal pardon for Anwar after he was sworn in as the seventh prime minister.

Up until his recent release, Anwar said he continued to harbour doubts about the wisdom of his rapprochement with Dr Mahathir.

“At certain times even despair, (I questioned) if this was the right move,” said Anwar.

However, he said doubts and concerns began evaporating when he saw how Dr Mahathir spearheaded Pakatan Harapan’s eventually successful general election campaign.

Anwar also said the PM whom former Australian counterpart Paul Keating previously called “recalcitrant” was no longer as willful as before.

“This is not the Mahathir that I knew, who would (now) say ‘I made a mistake, give me a chance to make amends’.

“That’s not Mahathir, Mahathir used to make no mistake, he’s like the Trump of these days,” he told BBC.

Anwar is touted as the next successor to Dr Mahathir as prime minister.

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Note: If everyone who likes our content helps fund it, it would help us bring more such content in the future. For as little as RM10, you can support The Third Force, and it only takes a minute. Click the donate button on the top right or follow the link HERE if you intend to make a contribution. Thank you.

Comments

Comments

Comments

Comments



Loading...