"Mr ISA Calling Others Dictator" — Najib Mocks Mahathir For Calling Anwar A Dictator

In a Facebook post, the jailed former prime minister took a swipe at Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, referring to him as "Mr ISA", saying that it was ironic that a dictator was describing others as the same.

Cover image via The Edge , Sadiq Sani/MalaysiaNow , Free Malaysia Today

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Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who is serving time for corruption in Kajang Prison, has come to the defence of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim

In a Facebook post yesterday, 19 March, the jailed former prime minister took a swipe at Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, hours after the latter accused Anwar of being a "dictator" and his government a "dictatorship".

According to Najib, it's ironic that a dictator was calling others the same.

"A dictator is calling someone else a dictator, Mr ISA is calling someone else a dictator," read Najib's Facebook post, in reference to Mahathir using the now-abolished Internal Security Act (ISA).

During his first term as prime minister from 1981 to 2003, Mahathir used the draconian act to arrest and lock up a number of individuals, especially politicians deemed as a security threat, without trial.

Najib's swipe at Mahathir was prompted by the nonagenarian's press statement in which he accused Anwar's government of being against any criticism and even taking action against opposition parties

"[Anwar's] (government) is a dictatorship. People can't speak up or criticise the government and that is a dictator for you," Mahathir said after the cancellation of a Malay Proclamation event.

Mahathir insinuated it was Anwar who gave the order to shut down the gathering that Mahathir said was only to "gather Malays to express their unhappiness with the current government".

According to Mahathir, the portrayal of Malaysia as a multi-racial country is actually a ploy to remove the special rights of the Malays and that the government doesn't want the Malays to unite.

Anwar called on Malays not to be fooled by the rhetorical pandering of Mahathir, who had been in power for over two decades, but after having failed to defend his seat, is whining that Malays have lost everything.

Mahathir speaks during the press conference after the cancellation of the Malay Proclamation event.

Image via Azneal Ishak/Malaysiakini

In response, Najib cited a list of "dictatorial" things Mahathir had done

Najib listed how the Attorney General, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief, Chief Judge, Bank Negara governor, and Inspector General of Police had been replaced by Mahathir.

The jailed former prime minister also said that Mahathir had all of his and his family's bank accounts frozen and forfeited his assets and properties even before any charges were filed against him.

Najib was referring to incidents that happened after Barisan Nasional (BN) lost the 14th General Election and Mahathir came back to power for the second time under Pakatan Harapan (PH).

Najib was eventually found guilty for his role in the multi-billion ringgit 1MDB scandal. He is currently serving a 12-year jail sentence while awaiting trial for other related cases.

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