THE recent findings of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) into the central bank’s forex losses in 1990s has not swayed Pakatan Harapan supporters, who continue to show up in droves for the opposition’s ceramah and events.
Many said they were all too aware that the inquiry was a political game by prime minister Najib Razak to malign the opposition leader ahead of the general election, which must be called before August.
They also questioned why government was raking up an old story that had occurred more than 30 years ago, but ignoring the very recent 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal that is currently the subject of criminal investigations in several countries.
If anything, they said, the RCI had served to strengthen support for the opposition, especially if Pakatan Harapan chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad were to be arrested over the inquiry findings.
PH supporters said the government could have done something years ago if they were sincere about finding out the truth, but it was clear that it only decided to set up an RCI after Dr Mahathir quit Umno, founded Bersatu, and joined PH.
Dr Mahathir and de facto opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim are among those implicated in the inquiry report. The RCI secretary last week filed a police report in Putrajaya to enable the police to open an official investigation into the case.
Here’s what the people have to say:
Zainun Mohd Nasir, 70, housewife
“RCI was audited but 1MDB was not. Malaysians please open your eyes, don’t believe (the RCI). I heard and I became frustrated.
“During Dr Mahathir’s time, life was not so hard. Why is it that now, during Najib’s time, the prices of goods keep going up? Does he know that the people are having a hard time, that things are expensive?
“The People’s Aid, BRIM is nothing to shout about either. The government is just trying to bribe the people”
Norhayati Abdullah, 35, nurse
“I did not follow the RCI much. But we compare our lives under Dr M and our lives now (under Najib)
“Dr M, he wants to rebuild the country. He is helping us but some people say he is senile, which is not true. He knows better how to lead a country.
“Not that we are against Umno but that party has strayed far from its course. It is now working for its self-interests and not for public interests.
Zakaria Harun, 45, factory worker
“I don’t know much about the RCI because I work shifts and do not get to listen to news much. But from what I have heard, it seems they are trying to bring up old stories of Dr Mahathir because they (BN) have power.
Roslan Abdul Aziz, 57, contractor
“I’ve heard about the RCI. But it is just an item on the agenda to be played up before the general election. They want to weaken Pakatan Harapan.
“Whatever it is, my support remains. I do not read the newspapers; if I were to watch television, it would only be for the news. But I read the news on Facebook and watch videos on Facebook.”
Yahya Abu Hashim, 61, government retiree
“I saw how the RCI was rushed through. It is because of the general election. What about 1MDB? What has happened to it?
“Malaysians have to read and weigh up the real situation for themselves. The Malays, all Malaysians are cheated and bribed with BR1M.
“When I was working in the government, we cannot show support for the opposition.”
Noraini Mohd Yatim, 61, housewife
“I came here to listen to the explanation. I do not want to listen to just one side.
“The RCI probe – it’s an old story. It did not burden. It is a 30-year-old issue; why bring it up? It is the issue now (1MDB) that has to be investigated.
“The RCI is to try to show that Dr M did wrong, and they want the villagers not to support PH.
“I have been following this issue. I don’t pay attention to the price of goods. But my children feel the pinch and find it tough to survive. Milk, Pampers (prices) have increased, it’s tough.
“Will the RCI report impact support for PH? No. Because we do not read the news. We watch TV3 and then we compare that to the videos on YouTube.
“Before this, I supported PAS. But no way now, because PAS supports Umno.