Published: Thu, May 10, 2018
Life&Culture | By Jesus Walton

Mahathir Mohamad, 92 will become worlds oldest PM

Mahathir Mohamad, 92 will become worlds oldest PM

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Thursday he accepted "the verdict of the people" after his ruling coalition failed to secure a simple majority in a general election for the first time ever.

In a huge political upset, Mahathir's opposition alliance ended the hold on power of the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition, which has governed Malaysia uninterrupted since its birth as an independent country in 1957.

Given the unprecedented nature of the opposition's tally, the immediate focus was around whether or not there would be a peaceful transfer of power that would see Mahathir sworn into office again as prime minister and Wan Azizah, the wife of his former deputy prime minister Anwar Ibrahim who he once deposed and is now behind bars, will be sworn in as deputy prime minister.

Najib's brother Nazir Razak, a prominent banker, said he expected a smooth overall transition of power.

Because no single party won a majority in the election, Najib said the country's king will have responsibility for appointing the next prime minister.

"We are not seeking revenge ... what we want is to restore the rule of law", Mahathir said of Najib's scandal-plagued rule.

He also announced - to cheers among his supporters - that there would be a two-day public holiday, adding: "But there will be no holidays for the winners". Instead, by early Thursday morning, results disclosed by the country's Election Commission showed that the opposition Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition had surpassed the 112 of the 222 seats required in parliament with 121 seats, giving it an effective simply majority, with BN winning just 79 seats.

Mahathir has promised to reverse a goods and services tax (GST) introduced by Najib during his first 100 days in power and review foreign investments.

The US has nothing on Malaysia when it comes to gerrymandering. "Today. That is because there is now no government of Malaysia", Mahathir said.

But palace authorities said there would be no such event and a spokesman for Mahathir, the 92-yer-old veteran former prime minister, said he had not heard from the palace and had no plan to go there.

"The candidate chosen by Pakatan Harapan as prime minister, that candidate you may have heard is Dr Mahathir Mohamad", said Dr Mahathir cheekily.

Theresa Might Fends Away Labour Party in Local UK Elections
Mr Corbyn said his party had put in a "solid" performance and was now well on the way to being able to form the next government. Now they lost 33 seats, we gained 77 seats.

Anwar is now serving a second jail sentence for sodomy and is due for release in June.

He also said Malaysia may renegotiate some deals with China.

PH also won five of the 12 state legislatures, even breaking into BN traditional fortress such as the states of Johor and Kedah.

Ultimately the explosive allegations of corruption, coupled with anger at rising living costs, proved too much for Malaysia's 15 million voters, already sick of racially divisive politics in the multi-ethnic country and graft scandals under years of BN rule.

But Malaysian politics is known for head-spinning reversals - not least of which was Mahathir's own conversion to grandfatherly opposition darling - and the future remains unclear.

The initial euphoria at the opposition victory will likely give way to some apprehension.

But 64-year-old Najib's popularity dropped sharply over the past three years, partly due to a scandal over 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), a state fund from which billions of dollars were allegedly siphoned off.

Before his firing in 1998, Anwar was the country's deputy prime minister under Najib's predecessor Mahathir Mohamad.

Najib, who denies any wrongdoing, clamped down on dissent to survive the scandal.

Mahathir has succeeded in luring away Malays from Najib, chipping away at a support base that his government had nurtured with an official affirmative action programme and racially-charged rhetoric.

Like this: