By Dr Mahathir Mohamad
1. I wonder why Lim Kit Siang is so afraid of me. His latest fear is about what he calls “Mahathirism”. I don’t know what is Mahathirism but obviously it conjures in the mind of Kit Siang something fearful. So he has declared his intention to fight Mahathirism.
2. Actually Mahathirism died when Dato Seri (Tun) Abdullah took over from me in 2003. He changed UMNO, the BN and the Government so much that they no longer resemble the institutions I used to know. I had to resign from UMNO.
3. Najib is more friendly but he is not that close to me. He has his own team of advisors. His policies are his own. So why fear Mahathirism. It is dead and gone.
4. Yes, I am active in campaigning for UMNO and the BN. That is because it is payback time. I became Prime Minister because UMNO and BN backed me; and backed me strongly. I owe a debt of gratitude to them. And that gratitude can only be manifested through helping UMNO and BN to be accepted by the people and to win.
5. Of course in backing UMNO and the BN coalition I would be helping my son Mukhriz as well. But why shouldn’t I. I am not the Prime Minister now and certainly I am not in the UMNO Supreme Council or the Barisan Nasional Representative Council.
6. When I was Prime Minister I did not allow my children to play a prominent role in UMNO politics. Certainly they were not allowed to become candidates in any election even though in 2003, when I was about to step down, Tun Khalil Yaacob, as Secretary of UMNO tried to persuade me to allow my son to take over the leadership of Kubang Pasu UMNO. Had I allowed it, he would most likely take my place as member of parliament for my old constituency.
7. My son Mukhriz now has to contest in another constituency led by someone else as division leader. He is not even a division head.
8. If Najib chooses him as a candidate I will campaign for him as I would campaign for other UMNO/BN candidates. After all Kit Siang promoted his son Guan Eng all the way to become Chief Minister of Penang when he was the powerful secretary of the DAP.
9. I don’t care whether he destroys Mahathirism or not. It is an exercise in futility as Mahathirism is a figment of his imagination. He should not be afraid of this toothless tiger figuratively speaking.