|Laman Webantu KM2A1: 4792 File Size: 6.8 Kb *|
TheAge: Mahathir Corruption Crackdown
By Mark Baker
21/6/2001 10:32 pm Thu
[Mahathir masih menyimpan dan memberi kedudukkan yang tinggi kepada
mereka yang kontroversi agar mudah diperkuda dan dicucuk hidung mereka.
Lagipun mereka dihukum di dalam Umno sahaja dan terus disimpan kerana
kerusi dan undi serta pengaruh mereka yang lebih disayang. Ahli Umno
begitu mudah tertipu sedangkan Mahathirlah bapak korupsi nombor satu.
Kes Ali Abul Hassan sahaja sudah cukup untuk membuktikan bahawa Mahathir
sebenarnya seorang kaki temberang. Apa yang disauk oleh Daim cumalah garam
tetapi Mahathir membolot semua intan kerana semua kunci kekayaan di dalam
negara kini hanya dipegang oleh dirinya seorang. Malangnya ahli Umno
begitu cepat melupakan inilah tangan yang membuat Petronas berlubang
By MARK BAKER
Thursday 21 June 2001
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has ordered a
renewed crackdown on corruption in the ruling United
Malays National Organisation before a party congress seen
as critical for the future of his 20-year rule.
Dr Mahathir warned a private meeting of senior members and
officials that the party must be seen to be serious about
removing corrupt leaders to staunch the erosion in its
He accused some party members of being more interested in
making money than upholding UMNO's goals and said they
were buying votes to ensure they won positions in which
they were free to enrich themselves.
The UMNO disciplinary board has suspended 12 members
this month for alleged vote-buying and abuse of power and
has reprimanded another nine. The 12 will be barred from
holding party office for up to six years.
The anti-corruption crackdown is seen as crucial to Dr
Mahathir's efforts to strengthen the party, which has had a
dramatic slide in electoral support since the jailing three
years ago of his former deputy, Anwar Ibrahim, on
discredited sex and corruption charges, and a series of
scandals involving senior officials.
UMNO's vote among its traditional Malay support base fell
sharply during last year's national elections - much of it
captured by the Islamic party, PAS - and the party later
suffered a humiliating byelection defeat in Dr Mahathir's
home state of Kedah.
The corruption issue is likely to be the dominant theme at
the four-day meeting of UMNO's supreme council, which begins
today. The congress is regarded as an opportunity for Dr
Mahathir to reassert his leadership after the resignation
last week of Finance Minister Daim Zainuddin.
Mr Daim - regarded as one of the few Malay leaders still
able to challenge the Prime Minister - is believed to have
quit after increasing disagreements over economic
management. But there are signs that Dr Mahathir may be
moving to paint the departure of his former protege as part of
his party clean-up.
Mr Daim, reportedly Malaysia's richest man, is a close
associate of two tycoons whose companies were
beneficiaries of recent expensive government rescue
packages that sparked widespread public criticism.
In response to rampant speculation that police were
preparing to lay corruption charges against Mr Daim, Dr
Mahathir told journalists that he was not under investigation
- then said police may have interviewed him, fuelling the
At Tuesday's private party meeting, Dr Mahathir said it was
vital for all party members to accept the disciplinary verdicts
to prove to the Malaysian people that UMNO was serious
about ridding itself of corrupt leaders.
But critics remain sceptical that the anti-corruption drive will
amount to more than window-dressing. Corruption and
nepotism is pervasive in a system where senior party officials
control government contracts and routinely favor their
families and friends.
Dr Mahathir's son, Mokhzani Mahathir, sold substantial
business interests and resigned as treasurer of UMNO's
youth wing in April, claiming "wild allegations" of favoritism
in awarding government projects had damaged him and his
UMNO targets corruption
Development: The deputy prime minister of Malaysia, Abdullah Badawi, has
told an assembly of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) that it
will become "weak and impotent" if it does not get rid of corruption
within its ranks.
Assessment: Badawi was addressing the organisation's youth wing on the
even of the organisation's three-day general assembly. He said: "Today
[there is] this belief among our members that winning divisional elections
guarantees fortune. It is a belief we must eliminate... It is time now
for us to separate politics from business."
The UMNO leadership is evidently rattled by the damage corruption, or the
perception of corruption, could have on its electoral prospects in 2004.
One of Mahathir Mohamad's sons has recently divested himself of his
business interests in an attempt to put his public life beyond suspicion
and it is a theme Mahathir himself has addressed recently on a number of
The next elections promise to be the closest fought in Malaysia for a long
time, and all parties, not just the UMNO, are vying for support outside
their usual ethnic and social constituencies. The Islamic party, for
instance, has recently been trying to court the Chinese vote. The UMNO is
still expected to win the 2004 elections, but its stranglehold on
Malaysian politics appears to be weakening.
Earlier this month Mahathir's finance minister Daim Zainuddin resigned for
unexplained reasons. He had been criticized for approving plans to bail
out Malay tycoons, and Mahathir is now reviewing some of these. Daim and
Mahathir were long-time allies and were instrumental in creating a strong
Malay business class over the last twenty years.
Now that policy of racial preference is blamed for creating a culture of
crony capitalism, centred on the UMNO. The measures the party takes to
reverse the adverse political effects of this policy and to win back
support that has gone to the Keadilan, the party led by the wife of
Mahathir's jailed rival, Anwar Ibrahim, and the Islamic opposition, will
determine the shape of Malaysian politics in the post-Mahathir era.