|Laman Webantu KM2A1: 4614 File Size: 12.9 Kb *|
Resignation Of Daim
By STS BTS
3/6/2001 9:03 am Sun
[Persoalannya Mahathir tahu tetapi berpura-pura tidak tahu dan
sanggup berbohong tidak tahu menahu. Malah Mahathir membiarkan Daim
terlalu lama kerana dia pun tumpang sekaki juga membalun harta negara
dan harta Umno.... Daim memegang banyak kunci rahsia termasuk berjuta-juta
wang Umno yang sudah entah kemana dikerjakannya buat mereka berdua ketika
krisis ekonomi menjenguk tiba. Ini mungkin punca sebenar Daim meletak
jawatan kerana mengsonglap wang Umno. Fokus harus diberi kepada peletakkan
jawatan dalam Umno - bukan dalam kabinet sahaja. Dengan melepaskan jawatan
itu beliau tidak perlu membentangkan kira-kira kemana wang Umno itu sudah
dikerjakannya. Isu penyelewengan dalam kabinet atau kerajaan dijangka akan
menutup isu penyelewengan tabung Umno agar akar-umbi merasa sudah lega....
padahal itu lebih dahsyat adanya.
RESIGNATION OF FINANCE MINISTER DAIM
Was he too candid for his own good?
His outspokenness on politics and the economy during closed-door
sessions with various groups has backfired
By Brendan Pereira
IT WAS just a matter of time.
The odds that Finance Minister Tun Daim Zainuddin could continue to
remain in the government were stacking up every day over the past few
Umno members were complaining that he was tight-fisted as the party
treasurer and corporate figures were alleging that he was playing
favourites and the closed-door pep-talk sessions he was having with
different groups were coming back to haunt him.
At these sessions, he spoke candidly about politics and the Malaysian
During a meeting with 30 members of Umno Youth earlier in the year, he
spoke of the fear of the ruling party not waking up from its slumber
and finding itself losing more support of the Malays.
He also said that there was a need to tackle issues like corruption,
money politics and political regeneration more seriously.
Several Youth members were surprised that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr
Mahathir Mohamad's trusted lieutenant was speaking so candidly.
After that meeting, some of them began speculating on a rift between
Tun Daim and the Premier.
The situation became so bad that aides to the Finance Minister had to
go on a damage-control exercise with Umno Youth members.
It was too late.
A short while later, Tun Daim met a group of newspaper editors and
again spoke with candour about the political scene.
Again, there was a backlash.
Stories of a political conspiracy started making the rounds. The
Straits Times found that some of the editors had been asked to repeat
what transpired at the meeting.
Apparently, Tun Daim felt he needed to be candid at those sessions to
jolt his party members and the establishment into taking the challenge
from the opposition seriously.
There was only one problem. By now, many believed that all was not
right between him and the man who appointed him Finance Minister on
two occasions - once in the 80s when the country was in the throes of
a gut-wrenching recession and in 1998 when Deputy Premier Anwar
Ibrahim was sacked.
Unlike before, purveyors of the speculation came from the corridors of
The rumour mill got a boost after Dr Mahathir appointed former Bank
Negara governor Tan Sri Ali Abul Hassan Sulaiman as his economics
It was common knowledge that the banker and the Finance Minister did
not see eye to eye on several issues, including the merger exercise of
However, at a recent closed door meeting with Umno Youth members, Tun
Daim said that though he sometimes had differences with Dr Mahathir,
he would never betray or undermine him.
That loyalty will see him go without kicking or screaming. He will
return to being Tun Daim Zainuddin, the businessman.
Daim quits all govt positions
It is unclear if the PM accepted his resignation but sources say that
Mahathir has known of the finance minister's plan to go for some time
By Brendan Pereira
KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's Finance Minister Daim Zainuddin quit from
all his government positions yesterday, ending the buzz of speculation
over his future in the Mahathir administration.
The Straits Times understands that the diminutive politician sent in
his letter of resignation at 3 pm to Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad,
saying that he wanted to give up his position as finance minister,
special functions minister, executive director of the National
Economic Action Council and chairman of the Langkawi Development
He is also stepping down as the treasurer of the United Malays
National Organisation (Umno), the ruling party.
Up till press time last night, it was unclear if Dr Mahathir had
accepted the letter of resignation.
Sources, however, said that the Premier had known Tun Daim's intention
of leaving the Cabinet for some time.
It is believed that the finance minister spoke to some officials over
the past few days and told them that when he returned to the Cabinet
in 1998, he did not have plans to stay on too long.
He also said that he was tired and needed to rest, pointing out that
he had been working at full throttle for the last 2 1/2 years.
If his resignation is accepted by Dr Mahathir, there is unlikely to be
any political fallout.
For a start, he will remain as the Member of Parliament for Merbok in
He has exhibited little political ambition over the years, declining
to contest the just-concluded divisional elections or build a network
of supporters as is the practice of Umno leaders with an eye on the
It is understood that he has told the Premier that, if possible,
Umno's treasurer should be a young politician.
The capital was in a frenzy yesterday morning after influential Malay
daily Utusan Malaysia published a front-page report on rumours that
the finance minister was going to leave office that day.
Journalists, politicians and fund managers were expecting an
announcement or a statement from the Prime Minister's Office but there
On his return from the G-15 meeting in Jakarta in the morning, the
Prime Minister was asked if he had received a letter of resignation
from Tun Daim.
He said that he had not.
If the letter of resignation is accepted, another round of intense
speculation can be expected.
This time, it will centre on Tun Daim's replacement.
He was seen as Malaysia's second-most powerful man
TUN DAIM Zainuddin was born on April 29, 1938 in Alor Star, Kedah. He
studied law in London before going into business in the late 60s.
He pioneered the first Malay property-development company and was
appointed the head of Peremba, a government property-development firm,
and Fleet Holdings, Umno's investment arm.
When Dr Mahathir Mohamad became Prime Minister in 1981, Tun Daim
became his trusted confidant.
Much of Tun Daim's mystique dates back to his stint as Finance
Minister from 1984 to 1991.
Even his detractors give him credit for helping turn Malaysia into one
of South-east Asia's most affluent nations.
He was brought back into the government in 1998 to help put the
Malaysian economy back on track.
Reappointed as Finance Minister in 1999, Tun Daim helped attract
foreign investment and reformed the banking system.
Umno's treasurer for six terms, he was seen as Malaysia's second most
powerful man after Dr Mahathir.
The Business Times, Singapore
Daim said to have thrown in the towel
But Mahathir yet to decide if he will accept Daim's resignation
By Eddie Toh
MALAYSIAN Finance Minister Daim Zainuddin has finally sent in his
resignation, ending months of intense speculation as well as closing a
chapter in his long-standing partnership with Prime Minister Mahathir
The Straits Times TV said last night Mr Daim handed in his letter of
resignation yesterday afternoon, but the premier has not decided if he
will accept it.
The widely expected resignation came at the end of his two-month leave
on May 31.
Earlier in the day, Dr Mahathir, who returned to Malaysia yesterday
after attending the G-15 summit in Jakarta, dismissed rumours that his
chief economic adviser has quit, but did not attempt to quash the
flurry of rumours.
'Setakat ini, belum lagi (at this stage, not yet),' he told reporters
who asked if Mr Daim had quit.
Political analysts said the premier is expected to accept Mr Daim's
resignation as the two men have not been seeing eye-to-eye over a host
of issues. Likely candidates to replace Mr Daim include former finance
minister Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Domestic Trade Minister Muhyiddin
Analysts said the departure of Mr Daim is not likely to lead to a
radical shift in the government's economic policy, as the two leaders
have agreed on the general thrust for the economy following the onset
of the Asian financial crisis in 1997.
Mr Daim had repeatedly defended Dr Mahathir's controversial decision
to impose capital controls in September 1998. The two men have also
been consistent on the need for the government to pick up the economic
slack through pump-priming measures and the policy of keeping interest
rates soft to help the private sector cope with its burgeoning debts.
But there is likely to be a fresh approach to the country's
privatisation policy and the restructuring of the debt-laden private
sector. This is because some decisions by Mr Daim, who was appointed
finance minister in 1999 following the sacking of Anwar Ibrahim, had
apparently irked Dr Mahathir and made his administration unpopular
with the public and the business community.
One of the earliest signs of a rift was in 1999 when Dr Mahathir
overturned Mr Daim's plan to create six super banks through a forced
Mr Daim had excluded three banks controlled by associates of Mr Anwar
- Hong Leong Bank, RHB Bank and Arab-Malaysian Bank - and picked
smallish Multi-Purpose Bank to swallow much bigger banks.
Multi-Purpose Bank is controlled by associates of Mr Daim.
The two leaders were also said to be at odds over Singapore
Telecommunications' failed plan to tie up with Time dotCom, the
telecom arm of Halim Saad, a protege of Mr Daim.
Perhaps, the most unpopular move made by Mr Daim was his decision to
pay RM8 per share to buy 29.09 per cent in Malaysian Airline System
from Tajudin Ramli, another protege of Mr Daim.
The price tag was more than twice the national carrier's net tangible
And public uproar intensified when three government agencies under Mr
Daim's purview emerged as substantial shareholders of Time dotCom
following its initial public offering flop earlier this year.
Signs of Mr Daim's imminent departure became clearer when Dr Mahathir
appointed a former central bank governor as his second financial
adviser in April.
Further confirming the writing on the wall for Mr Daim, the government
made several major decisions during his absence - the scrapping of the
10 per cent exit levy on repatriation of equity funds by foreign
portfolio managers and sweeping changes to rules governing foreign
ownership of properties.
And earlier this week, Dr Mahathir overturned Mr Daim's decision to
issue RM6 billion (S$2.85 billion) worth of bonds to rescue two light
rail operators, one of which is controlled by Mr Halim's Renong Bhd.
Mr Daim's departure may therefore cloud the future of companies linked
to his associates. They include a long list of listed firms such as
Renong, United Engineers Malaysia, Time dotCom, Multi-Purpose Holdings
Bhd, Technology Resources Industries, Naluri and Land & General.
But the decision will bring a sigh of relief to tycoons like Quek Leng
Chan, Azman Hashim and Rashid Hussain whose banks have been excluded
by Mr Daim from the first bank merger blueprint.
Mr Rashid's plan to raise his stake in his RHB Bank in March had also
been scuttled by Mr Daim.
Observers said Dr Mahathir may have no choice but to part company with
Mr Daim, a relationship that went back over three decades.
'If Daim doesn't go, it could affect Dr Mahathir's own political
future,' said a senior executive of a listed company, which has been
awarded a multi-billion ringgit privatisation contract.