A year after Tun Dr. Mahathir returned from Europe

Today is exactly a year after former Prime Minister and UMNO President Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad returned from a long trip summer holidays in Europe. It was the first time Malaysians get a chance to meet him after his stinging attack against ‘The Level Four Boys’ and issues pertaining the cancellation of the Scenic Bridge project in Johor Bahru and Proton at an event organized by various NGO and streamed via broadband by Malaysia Today.net, at Kelab Century Paradise, Taman Melawati, near Kuala Lumpur on 24 June 2006.

His open criticism against Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s leadership, management and decisions at Kelab Century Paradise to a crowd of 1,000 was a landmark speech. It attracted so much attacks in return from the Government, including Cabinet Ministers such as Dato’ Seri Nazri Aziz and Dato’ Khaled Nordin.

He and wife, Tun Dr. Siti Hasmah Mohd. Ali arrived from Stansted Airport, North London via a chartered jet at Petronas Private Terminal, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz International Airport, Subang at 9.30 am and was met by close personal friends.

Outside the gates of the terminal, over 1000 well wishers and supporters gathered, some with banners and special printed t-shirts were issued. A Malay political portal, MyKMU.net had organized this welcome back session to show that the rakyat still in very much support of Tun Dr. Mahathir and the issues that he has been vehemently highlighted. Some noted political bloggers like Dato’ Ron, Dato’ Kadir Jasin, Raja Petra Kamaruddin, Rocky and Sang Kelembai were also present.

I was one of the persons organized the welcome back session. Just before Tun Dr. Mahathir stepped out of gates of terminal, someone asked whether my Enterprise could be used as a platform for Tun Dr. Mahathir to speak to the well wishers and maybe talked to the waiting press, since it has a sunroof. I summarily agreed and repositioned the Mitsubishi Pajero V6 Pajero, named “Enterprise”.

When Tun Dr. Mahathir stepped out at 10.10am, he walked to a very anxious crowd who eagerly wanted to see him up close and walked down the road about 100 meters to the awaiting Enterpise which was repositioned almost to middle of the road. He climbed into the back seat and I asked him to stand up through the sunroof and he did. The crowd cheered as he waved, with a sunshine smile. I later asked him to stand on the backseat so that he was perched higher and he did and started waving more to the eager crowd.

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For the next fifteen minutes, he addressed the crowd and talked to the press, including foreign bureaus who send their reporters. He was beaming and gleaming with glee, as he never thought that there would be supporters to welcome him home.

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Blogger Gerbang Ruhanie, Dato’ Ruhanie Ahmad passed to Tun Dr. Mahathir his latest book, “Mahathir Menyinga” at the end of his speech on the Enterprise. It was about the cancellation of Scenic Bridge.

The last time I smsed Dato’ Mukhriz Mahathir was 12 hours earlier, who sent Tun Dr. Mahathir of in London. He said his father did not expect anyone to be at the airport to welcome him home, since he considered himself as ‘orang pencen‘. However, Dato’ Mukhriz challenged me “Now, would you prove him wrong?”.

I did. We all did. And Tun Dr. Mahathir was definitely pleased people like me proved him wrong.

*Some of the photos were taken from Minaq Jinggo Photopages

Published in: on July 22, 2007 at 08:11  Comments (4)  

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I remember the day as if it was just yesterday. Blogged about it, too – Breakfast at Subang Airport. That was probably the first time I met most of the bloggers who have continued blogging till today. Including you, Big Dog.

    Turning up to welcome Dr M that day gave many of us the balls to speak up. I remember looking around and seeing familiar faces. None of them had to be there. Dr M was no longer in power and if anyone wanted to lick his boots they’d go elsewhere.

    And I remember the Pajero, the “battered” Mitsubishi Pajero (that was how I described it in my blog then, without knowing it was your transport).

    We saw many more such occasions after that one. I attended some of them. And the pepper-spray incident happened later. You were there with him, so we can expect an anniversary edition on that incident later!

    Yes, it was so clear to me as if this morning. That is why I hv this special commemoration.

  2. wow, its been a year already huh? i remember waiting for all the newsfeed concerning TUN from the likes of BGDC@you, Jinggo, abe yeh and CW3 at myKMU.

    no offense big bro, but for all the greatness he had done for the country, I thought he deserved more than just the back of a Pajero.

  3. hope the “semangat” that gather all of us there, still burning…

  4. i was there, with few friends, masa tuh masih lagi bergelar pelajar di universiti islam antarabangsa…menarik kerana ramai golongan muda yang berkongsi aspirasi yang sama..


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