“Is holding GE15 now all about freeing Najib?”

YESTERDAY (Oct 10), one of the Barisan Nasional (BN) parties were said to have put forward a resolution to free former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak from imprisonment.

Although the party president concerned has issued a denial on this, there is no doubt that this is one explicit or implicit objective of UMNO and BN to hold the 15th General Elections (GE15) now.

In Singapore, the authorities have taken action against the former deputy CEO of BSI Bank Ltd, Singapore Branch (BSIS) for his contribution to the bank’s failure to file suspicious transaction reports (STR) regarding 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB)-related transactions.

Raj Sriram, who is also the former head of private banking of BSIS, was issued a 24-month conditional warning from the Singapore Police’s Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) and a 10-year prohibition order by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

“BSIS… was a key conduit for tainted funds in the 1MDB debacle,” MAS’ deputy managing director (financial supervision) Ho Hern Shin reportedly said.

MAS withdrew BSIS’ licence in May 2016 due to serious and repeated breaches of anti-money laundering/combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) requirements.

At least 10 countries in the world have taken action on the 1MDB scandal but it is significant that neither the leaders of UMNO nor the other BN parties have ever condemned the 1MDB scandal, whether now or in the past decade.

And now, one of the explicit or implicit objectives of UMNO and BN in GE15 is to free Najib and the other protagonists of the 1MDB scandal from criminal liability.

Neither UMNO nor the other BN parties are concerned that Malaysia is known worldwide as a kleptocracy because of the 1MDB scandal.

The valid question that must be asked by Malaysians is: whether GE15 is about freeing Najib from jail or freeing Malaysians from poverty, exploitation, inequalities and injustices and positioning Malaysia to become a world-class great plural nation.

“The 10th PM of Malaysia”

GE15 will elect the 10th prime minister of Malaysia.

Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman and the coalition’s candidate to be prime minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, has made the clarion call for Malaysian voters to fix the “mess” after 65 years of Malaysian nationhood, reclaim the country from two “backdoor” Governments and fight for a future that is sustainable and prosperous and which shows care and compassion to all people.

Caretaker prime minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob was not being truthful when he claimed in his live telecast yesterday that the country was recognised as the best in South-East Asia in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.

How can we make this claim when we have the highest death per million of the population in ASEAN?

In fact, we are almost double that of the second ASEAN nation in COVID-19 deaths per million of population, as follows:

  1. Malaysia (1,097)
  2. Indonesia (567)
  3. Philippines (563)
  4. Brunei (505)
  5. Thailand (468)
  6. Vietnam (436)
  7. Myanmar (352)
  8. Singapore (275)
  9. Cambodia (178)
  10. Laos (101)

Will Malaysia have UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi as the 10th prime minister? Will Najib return as Malaysia’s 11th prime minister?

If Malaysia wants to make a mockery of the world that regards Malaysia as a kleptocracy and Najib as a thief, vote for UMNO, BN, Zahid and Najib.

If we want Malaysia to reset and return to the original nation-building principles and policies which were sabotaged by the Sheraton Move political conspiracy which toppled a democratic, lawful and constitutional Government and brought in two “backdoor” Governments, then vote for Pakatan and Anwar as the 10th prime minister of Malaysia.

GE15 will be a test of whether we care for Malaysia and future generations, regardless of race, religion or region, so that Malaysia can stand tall in the world during Malaysia’s centennial in 2057 as a world-class plural nation.

Malaysians must have the stamina, guts, gumption and vision to continue the long, hard and unfinished work of creating a Malaysia that can fulfill the Malaysian Dream and in Bapa Malaysia Tunku Abdul Rahman’s words, be a “beacon of light to a difficult and distracted world”. – Oct 11, 2022

DAP supremo and veteran lawmaker Lim Kit Siang is the outgoing MP for Iskandar Puteri.

The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.

Main photo credit: Reuters

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