PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has been listed among Time magazine’s 100 most influential people of 2019, following Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) victory in the 14th general election last year.
Sarawak Report founder and editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown, in a brief, described the prime minister as a “formidable old warhorse who dazzled during a gruelling campaign”, during GE14.
She also spoke of the Langkawi MP’s crusade against former prime minister Najib Razak over the 1MDB scandal.
“You don’t have to be young to fight.
“Take Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the former Malaysian prime minister, who came out of retirement last year to lambast Najib Razak, who is accused of embezzling millions of dollars from the country’s 1MDB development fund.
“Venting moral outrage, Dr M swept back to power in a landslide election victory in May 2018 at age 92,” she wrote.
Rewcastle-Brown, who first broke the scandal surrounding the embattled sovereign wealth fund, said Mahathir managed to bring people of different races together.
“He gathered vast crowds; his reliance on core values united electoral groups and his age inspired trust in a grand man of politics,” she wrote.
Rewcastle-Brown said Mahathir is committed to handing over power to the former leader of the opposition, Anwar Ibrahim, 71, whom he released from jail days after his victory.
“For Malaysia, the episode has re-established democracy in a country that almost teetered into totalitarianism,” she added.
The PH chairman is listed under the “Leaders” category, along with the likes of US President Donald Trump, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Pakistan President Imran Khan, and Pope Francis.
The other categories in the list, unveiled on Wednesday, are for pioneers, artists, icons and titans.