PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Najib Razak should not see an opportunity to clear his name as a waste of time, Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today.
Still hopeful that Najib would take up his challenge to make an appearance at the PPBM-organised “Nothing to Hide 2.0” forum on Aug 13, Mahathir said the platform would be a good place for Najib to address the allegations against him once and for all.
“It’s not a waste of time, I’m giving him a chance to explain all those allegations against him.
“He can say I am not guilty, I have done no wrong, and show evidence that he has done no wrong. For my part, I will say he has done something wrong, I have evidence.
“But he can explain and clear his name. We’re giving him a good chance and he should be very grateful.”
The 92-year-old chairman of Pakatan Harapan was speaking to reporters at a Hari Raya open house hosted by DAP’s Zaid Ibrahim.
Last week, Mahathir invited Najib to the second “Nothing to Hide” forum, saying the two can have a discussion on how the former prime minister had enriched his children as well as how the prime minister had RM2.6 billion in his personal accounts.
Najib has yet to respond to Mahathir’s invitation, but Umno leaders have spoken on his behalf. They had said that Najib as the leader of the country, need not waste his time by attending the forum where whatever he said would be dismissed anyway.
Meanwhile, Mahathir said this time he could guarantee Najib would be “bodily safe”. His remark came in response to the reason for the first “Nothing to Hide” forum, held at the Putra World Trade Centre in 2015 not getting police approval.
The Nothing To Hide forum was held on June 5, 2015 at Umno’s headquarters. It was supposed to be attended by Najib and for him to address public queries but it was cancelled unexpectedly when Mahathir said he would be joining the event as well.
Mahathir, who was then still a member of Umno, came to the forum as he had promised and spoke for about six minutes before he was forced to stop by the police.
At the time, Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar, had said that the event was called off to preserve “public order”.
Mahathir said the BN chairman would perhaps still be concerned this time around, knowing he wouldn’t be able to argue his case.
“He has done a lot of wrong things. So if he appears (at the forum), it will be bad for him,” said Mahathir.
Najib has denied ever pocketing public funds, and has said that the RM2.6 billion was a donation made to him by a member of the Saudi royal family, to help with Umno’s campaigns in the run-up to the last general election.