Mahathir Fears Malaysia Will Become Like Singapore As Anyone Can Be The PM
Despite losing his seat in Malaysia’s recent General Election (GE), former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad is still active in political discourse.
One of the topics he never tires of is Singapore.
In fact, he said recently that he fears Malaysia will become like Singapore after the next two GEs.
However, Malaysians responded by saying that they hope this will come true.
M’sia’s Malays losing political power: Mahathir
Last Saturday (4 Mar), Dr Mahathir, 97, was speaking at a dialogue after a “mini townhall” in Putrajaya, reported Malaysian news outlet Sinar Harian.
Speaking alongside other guest politicians, he lamented that the Malays in Malaysia had already lost control of the national economy.
Worse still, they’re also losing political power, he said.
The United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), Malaysia’s former ruling party, lost power for the first time in GE2018.
Though they returned to power from 2020 to 2022, they were trounced again in GE2022, with their Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition winning just 25.03% of the vote and 30 out of 222 seats, behind two other coalitions.
Current M’sian govt may change electoral boundaries: Mahathir
Dr Mahathir also claimed that the current government, led by Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, could make changes to the electoral boundaries.
This may reduce the number of Malay-majority constituencies and increase the number of non-Malay-majority constituencies, he alleged.
Doing so will change the “existing government pattern” to some extent in the next GE, he feared.
In the subsequent GE, “the situation will become worse”, he predicted.
Thus, Malaysia could become like Singapore within the next two elections, he warned.
No guarantee PM must be Malay: Mahathir
Dr Mahathir pointed out that in Malaysia, there’s no guarantee that the PM must be Malay.
Thus, “anyone can be the PM”, he maintained.
He noted that even at this point in time, the Malay parties in the government are “not in power”.
They’re divided into three parties, he said, adding,
I am sure that if we’re not careful, the next election will come and if the votes get bought off, we’ll elect people who are not good and they will mortgage our country.
To avoid this, he urged the Malays to put aside their own interests and party affiliations to regain power in Malaysia.
Because there’s “no unity” now, their “fate is determined by others and we don’t get what we want”, he complained.
Dr Mahathir is currently an adviser to Parti Bumiputera Perkasa Malaysia (Putra). He joined the party in February after quitting Parti Pejuang Tanah Air, which he founded in 2020, along with 12 other members.
Pejuang is currently headed by his son Mukhriz Mahathir.
Good for Malaysia to be like Singapore, Malaysians tell Mahathir
Dr Mahathir’s comments about Singapore may not have had the desired effect, though.
In a tweet on the same day, Malaysian journalist Erna Mahyuni indicated that it would be better for Malaysia to be like Singapore, as we have faster internet, better wages and better public transport, among other things.
Another Malaysian tweeted that she “can’t wait” for Malaysia to be like Singapore — but with better food, of course.
One response simply said, “It would be nice to be like Singapore” and attached two images — a screenshot of the then currency exchange rate between the countries, and a photo of hordes of Malaysians crossing the border into Singapore, presumably for work.
Looks like apart from Dr Mahathir, our small nation has quite a few admirers, after all.
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Featured image adapted from Dr. Mahathir bin Mohamad on Facebook and shawnanggg on Unsplash.
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