EXTRAORDINARY times called for extraordinary measures, said Pakatan Harapan chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad, as he sought to convince Kelantan voters to switch sides.
“It looks strange, doesn’t it? Me, sitting up here with Mohamad Sabu, someone I threw into jail – twice,” said the former prime minister to roars of laughter from the crowd in the seaside town of Bachok.
“He used to call me ‘maha firaun’ (great tyrant). Now he sits next to me and whispers in my ear.
“I never dreamed there would be such a day, but here we are now,” said Dr Mahathir of his newfound relationship with Mohamad, who is a PH deputy president and the Amanah president.
The former Barisan Nasional chairman is now allies with some of his staunchest enemies in the past. Some of his coalition partners, including Mohamad, were jailed during his 22 years as the prime minister.
Mohamad was detained twice under the Internal Security Act. He and Husam Musa, both ex-PAS veterans, are now in the four-party PH alliance.
The country was undergoing an extraordinary time, and extraordinary times required extraordinary measures, said Dr Mahathir of his unlikely political partners.
“We have to put aside our differences to bring down (Prime Minister) Najib (Razak) as he has stolen billions from the country.”
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Dr Mahathir was on stage with Mohamad at the PH national roadshow to present to the people its prime minister and deputy prime minister designates, Dr Mahathir and Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, respectively, and manifesto “Buku Harapan”, or Book of Hope.
Dr Wan Azizah and PH deputy president Muhyiddin Yassin were also present.
PH is up against Barisan Nasional, which is helmed by Najib, and PAS, in the general election to come.
Dr Mahathir said Najib would try every trick in the book to ensure he and his coalition remained in power.
The first trick was redelineation, said Dr Mahathir, to create more mono-ethnic seats.
“Najib believes that if he gives the Malays money, they will vote for BN. Go ahead and take the money, but vote for PH. After all, the money comes from the federal government.”
Najib would also attempt to cheat by preventing PH from registering as an official coalition, he said.
“He knows that if we are not registered as a coalition, BN can win. He is afraid. I have never met a politician who is more afraid than Najib.”