Mahathir’s views not relevant, says Malaysian PM Anwar, Latest World News - The New Paper

Mahathir’s views not relevant, says Malaysian PM Anwar

SERDANG – It was irresponsible of Dr Mahathir Mohamad to remark that Malaysian Indians are “not completely loyal” to the country, says Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

He said no former premier should insult any race, adding that such statements from Dr Mahathir were nothing new.

“I do not regard Dr Mahathir’s statement on Indians not being loyal to the country as relevant.

“I find it irresponsible of him to make such a statement to insult any race as he was a prime minister for many years,” Mr Anwar said to the media on Jan 16 after launching the “AI for Rakyat” programme at Universiti Putra Malaysia.

“He is well known for his views – that the Malays are all lazy except for himself, and the Chinese are also not loyal to the country except for a few of his cronies.

“I disagree completely with such statements, as all Malaysians should be looked at as one, and we must look at the strength of the whole rakyat (not as races),” Mr Anwar added.

In a recent interview with a Tamil news channel based in Chennai, India, Dr Mahathir claimed that Malaysian Indians were not completely loyal to the country because they still identified with their country of origin.

The former premier also said that non-Malays should fully assimilate and “become Malay”.

Dr Mahathir’s remarks have drawn criticism from various leaders and groups.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Indian Transformation Unit (Mitra) special task force committee chairman Datuk R Ramanan said Dr Mahathir should refrain from making statements that touch on sensitive and racial issues.

He said the former premier should not question the loyalty and love for the country among any particular community.

“I am of Indian descent, but my blood is Malaysian. I received this blood from Malaysia because I was born here,” he was quoted by Bernama as saying on Jan 16 after visiting the headquarters of the Malaysia Cooperative Societies Commission.

He said many Indians served as police officers and soldiers, which proved their loyalty and love for the country.

“As far as I remember, Tun (Dr Mahathir) himself has never gone to war,” said Mr Ramanan, who is also the deputy Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Minister.

He said he did not understand the necessity to provide Dr Mahathir with proof, given the community’s commendable service to the nation.

Mr Ramanan said Dr Mahathir’s stance itself was inconsistent. – THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK