Mahathir decries ‘sweet promises’ to betray people’s vote

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad says politicians should honour their promises.

PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has chided elected representatives who switch allegiances, and said they should not renege on promises made at the general election and honour the people’s trust.

“The problem in our country, after the people have chosen the government, there is a method that can be used to deny the people’s choice. This should not be done because we made promises to the people, and the people supported us based on the promises,” he said at a public forum tonight.

Mahathir made his remarks while answering questions during the forum on events in Sabah, where some assembly members had switched to backing an attempt by former chief minister Musa Aman to force the collapse of the Warisan-run government.

Mahathir said that Malaysia is a democratic country and the people had the right to choose a government. Politicians should honour the people’s right to choose, he said.

Elected representatives should not change their principles, even if the party he joined had changed direction from the party’s original goal. “They should remain true to their principles, not to the party,” he said. “We can leave the party if it deviates.”

“When sweet promises are made by others, we sometimes forget the promises we made to the people. This is not good for a democratic country, when we ignore promises to the people,” he said.

Last week, members of Sabah DAP claimed that 7 assemblymen of the ruling coalition had been offered money and positions to defect. Two assemblymen, Jannie Lasimbang and Calvin Chong, lodged a police report that they were visited by “political agents” of other parties.

PKR also dismissed Inanam state assemblyman Kenny Chua after he was reported to be among the group supporting Musa.