So far so good with Dr M, but not his party, says Ambiga

Ambiga Sreenevasan says credit is due to Dr Mahathir Mohamad for several reforms.

KUALA LUMPUR: Prominent activist Ambiga Sreenevasan said Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad should be credited for several “good” measures in his administration since coming to power last year, but warns that his party PPBM is slowly turning into “Umno 2.0″.

“As far as I am concerned, some good moves have been made where the prime minister is concerned. I think he is genuine about corruption to the extent he can be, with the rollout of the NACP (National Anti-Corruption Plan).

“He talks about the rule of law, which he never used to. He does talk about the independence of the judiciary, which he never believed in before. There are changes.

“But, when it comes to PPBM, it is actually looking more and more like Umno 2.0,” the former Bar Council president told a human rights event here today.

She referred to the controversial speech by PPBM vice-president Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman at the party’s general assembly last December, in which the former Election Commission chairman said government contracts should be channelled to party division leaders.

Ambiga said Rashid should have been sacked for making such a statement.

“It is very disappointing,” said Ambiga, who was the chairman of Bersih.

She said PPBM had also not addressed criticism over its secretary-general Marzuki Yahya’s “dubious” academic qualification.

“There are so many such instances, and it is happening in PPBM. Which is why, it is looking more and more like Umno 2.0. That has to be addressed,” she said.