PETALING JAYA – Malaysia’s second prime minister, the late Abdul Razak Hussein, brought Dr Mahathir Mohamad back into Umno’s fold so that he could strengthen, defend, and raise Umno, not destroy it, says Nazifuddin Najib, the grandson of Razak.
Nazifuddin said he was disappointed that Mahathir had set aside his principles and achievements in his 22 years as a prime minister and Umno president.
He said Mahathir’s attack against his father, Najib, was unbecoming of a former prime minister, especially in sacrificing his dignity to be the prime ministerial candidate for the opposition and to work with the DAP.
“Tun Mahathir, return to the right path, that is the path Tun Razak paved for you to become the fourth prime minister,” Nazifuddin said in his Facebook post today.
Razak was responsible in bringing Mahathir back into Umno in 1971 after the latter was sacked in 1969 for criticising the then party president Tunku Abdul Rahman.
Nazifuddin, a businessman, said as the third generation of Razak’s legacy, he truly appreciated recent remarks by Mahathir’s wife, Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali, who had fond recollections of Razak.
In a recent discussion titled “Jasa Tun Razak”, broadcast live on Mahathir’s Facebook, Siti Hasmah had said that Razak was well loved by the people and he always had their interests at heart.
She had also said that the reason why Mahathir always mentioned the contributions of Razak was because the latter was a mentor and icon to him.
Siti Hasmah said Razak had seen the potential in Mahathir, who was a young minister then.
Nazifuddin said if Mahathir truly cherished Razak’s contributions, the Pakatan Harapan chairman should protect Najib just as Najib had protected him in the past in 1988 when Umno was declared illegal and in 1998 during the political crisis when Mahathir had a falling out with his then-deputy Anwar Ibrahim.
Nazifuddin said there would always be a difference in opinion on how a country should be run and times had changed compared to Mahathir’s era.
“The people’s needs and wants have also changed with the rapidly changing times, especially now that we live in an era of technological and digital economic advancement.
“So there is no reason for Mahathir to be so angry at Najib unless there is a hidden agenda as mentioned by many members of the public who know Mahathir very well,” Nazifuddin said.
“If Tun Mahathir really loved Tun Razak, he should live like Tun Razak and be with Umno until his last breath.”