Censored by Putrajaya, Dr Mahathir prepared to give speeches on lorries

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has fallen out of favour with Putrajaya following his heavy criticism of Datuk Seri Najib Razak. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, March 14, 2016.Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has fallen out of favour with Putrajaya following his heavy criticism of Datuk Seri Najib Razak. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, March 14, 2016.Now an "undesirable" in Putrajaya's eyes, former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is prepared to deliver his speeches from the back of lorries if halls and hotels are no longer open to him.

Former PAS vice-president Datuk Husam Musa told a forum in Kuala Lumpur last night that Dr Mahathir had discussed the problem of censorship during the first meeting between the 45 signatories of the Citizens' Declaration several days ago.

"In the meeting with Dr Mahathir recently, he complained that he can't even rent hotel rooms, never mind a stadium to give his speeches.

"I said, never mind Tun, we'll look for a lorry and any field and give our speeches from the back of the lorry. The sight of Tun giving a speech from a truck would be a bonus," said Husam.

He said the matter came up when the meeting began discussing plans to hold a nationwide road show, following the March 27 congress organised by Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.

The former de facto law minister expects more than 1,000 to attend the congress, with 18 to 20 leaders giving speeches, including Dr Mahathir. 

"The first programme after March 27 is a road show, and it will begin with four states – Kelantan, Kedah, Johor and Sabah.

"If Dr Mahathir joins us at our ceramah in Kedah, he will speak from the back of a lorry," Husam said at the forum titled "Pembangkang + Pasukan Mahathir, Berbaloikah Untuk Rakyat" (Opposition + Team Mahathir, will it benefit the people).

The hall was packed with cheering supporters who hung on to the speakers' every word, while another 1,500 listened to the speeches streamed live through the Internet and radio.

Besides Husam, PKR secretary-general Rafizi Ramli, DAP organising secretary Anthony Loke and Amanah strategy director Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad also spoke at the forum last night.

The Cabinet terminated Dr Mahathir as adviser to national oil firm Petronas last Friday, a week after the former prime minister formed the broad coalition to oust Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

It said the declaration Dr Mahathir had signed with opposition leaders was aimed at toppling the democratically elected government and therefore went against the law and the Federal Constitution.

Among those present at the signing of the declaration on March 4 were Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, DAP parliamentary chief Lim Kit Siang, former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and former MCA president Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik.

Others included former Bersih co-chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, Bersih chairman Maria Chin Abdullah, Datuk Zaid Ibrahim and activist Hishamuddin Rais.

From among Pakatan Harapan were DAP's Loke and vice-chairman Teresa Kok, Parti Amanah Negara vice-president Datuk Mujahid Yusof Rawa and PKR vice-presidents Chua Tian Chang and Rafizi Ramli.

Two PAS leaders, its elections director Datuk Mustafa Ali and Pokok Sena MP Datuk Mahfuz Omar, were also present.

Dr Mahathir said Najib's administration had inflicted damage on the country and caused Malaysia to be listed as among the most corrupt nations.

He said Najib's removal from office must be through non-violent and "legally permissible means". – March 14, 2016.


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