Anwar Ibrahim says he has no “personal vendetta” against either his former boss Dr Mahathir Mohamad or present premier Najib Razak.
PETALING JAYA: Emerging from prison to act as his own counsel in an ongoing defamation suit, former Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim was all smiles and in an apparent jovial mood on Tuesday when he told reporters he had no “personal vendetta” against either former Premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad or present Premier Najib Razak.
In a report in Singapore’s Channel News Asia, Anwar, who is serving a five-year prison term for sodomising his personal aide, said he had no ill feelings towards anyone, including his former boss Mahathir or Najib, who he has claimed had him imprisoned on trumped up charges for political reasons.
“I have already forgiven everyone a long time ago. My battle is not a personal one; it is about institutional reforms. I have no personal vendetta against Dr Mahathir or Mr Najib.”
Anwar’s first encounter with prison followed his arrest in 1998 while he served as deputy prime minister to Mahathir. However earlier this month, Anwar urged other Opposition leaders and NGOs to support Mahathir in his quest to see Najib removed from office.
On March 4, the Citizens’ Declaration led by Mahathir was signed by politicians from both sides of the divide as well as civil society groups. Besides Najib’s resignation, the declaration also seeks institutional reforms in order to “Save Malaysia” from degenerating into a failed state.
The move to oust Najib stems largely from an exposé by the Wall Street Journal that RM2.6 billion had been channelled into his private bank accounts in 2013.
WSJ further alleged the funds originated from debt-riddled 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) a state-owned investment company under the Finance Ministry.
Najib meanwhile has explained the funds were a political donation from Saudi Arabia while representatives of 1MDB have maintained that everything in the company was above board. Early this year, Attorney-General Apandi Ali cleared Najib of all wrongdoing in the RM2.6 billion scandal.