KUALA LUMPUR: Jamal Yunos today defended deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s public disclosure of ex-premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Indian lineage.
The Sungai Besar Umno division chief said Zahid was not making a racial slur but only reminding Umno members not to betray the party once they left their government post, like what Mahathir did.
Jamal said the actions of Mahathir and his opposition allies to bring down prime minister Najib Razak and the Umno-led government deserved condemnation.
“We don’t care about our ancestries, we are a nation of many races, like myself who descended from the Banjars (a people from southern Kalimantan in Indonesia).
“Dr Mahathir had urged Umno members to be loyal to the party when he was with Umno, but he was actually using the party and stepping on the heads of Malays to further his political career and enriching his family.
“What Zahid said of Dr Mahathir is true, ‘habis madu sepah dibuang’ (proverb meaning discarding what is no longer useful). Dr Mahathir is the father of disunity.
“Where did PKR come from? From the tyranny of Dr Mahathir towards Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim; why was PPBM created? Because of Dr Mahathir’s craving to topple Najib,” he said.
Opposition leaders like Anwar and Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli had long ago exposed Mahathir’s Indian roots and what Zahid revealed was not anything new, he told reporters at the Dang Wangi police station after lodging a report against Mahathir.
Zahid, who is the home minister and Umno acting deputy president, was widely criticised after claiming on Sunday that the name on Mahathir’s identity card (IC) was “Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty”.
He had said at the Kelana Jaya Umno division meeting that the Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman was “the man who struggled for the Malay agenda” once but was actually “using the Malays”.
Following the revelation, Mahathir hit back by making a revelation of his own, that Zahid met him after his appointment as deputy prime minister to seek his support to oust Najib and enable him to take over the post.
Jamal denied Mahathir’s allegation and accused the former premier of malice.
“Today, I am here (police station) with Malaysian NGOs to make a police report against Dr Mahathir for accusing Zahid of wanting to oust Najib.
“This is a lie aimed to rile the public and Umno members. We don’t believe a word of it,” he said.
Jamal, who was accompanied by about 30 people, as usual did not forsake his gimmick.
This time, he mounted a LCD screen with a loudspeaker on a lorry to show a recording of opposition speeches accusing Mahathir of having Indian ancestry.
Jamal’s group also carried placards displaying their support for Zahid.