When pro-Opposition online news portals aired the biography of PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah Ahmad Badawi two days before Hari Raya Aidil Fitri, it drew a lot of flak. Pro-UMNO online media was quick to take shots at it and also the man renown for his habitual dozing off in public, despite the ultra busy period for everyone in a long holiday mode and mood.
The Riong Kali news portal latest take on the ‘Awakening’ book’:
Abdullah should be ready for a stinger from Dr Mahathir, warns Utusan Malaysia
BY HASBULLAH AWANG CHIK
AUGUST 11, 2013
LATEST UPDATE: AUGUST 11, 2013 12:02 PM
Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi should be ready for a taste of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s “caustic and cynical” rebuttal over the former’s remarks in his new book warned Utusan Malaysia.
The paper said it was just a matter of time before the country’s longest serving prime minister would reply his successor’s cutting criticisms.
Awang Selamat, the collective voice of the paper’s editors, said Abdullah’s remarks in the book “Awakening: The Abdullah Badawi Years in Malaysia” has dissipated any hope of improved relations between the two.
“I’m praying that a healthier debate will take place so that any negative fallout doesn’t affect Umno and Barisan Nasional. This needs both leaders to cooperate,” Awang wrote in his weekly column in the Umno-controlled Utusan Malaysia.
In the book, Abdullah, popularly known as Pak Lah, spoke about how the country would have gone bankrupt had he bowed to pressure from Mahathir to continue spending without control on mega projects.
Abdullah said Mahathir only wanted his suggestions to be followed without question and refused to listen to the opinion of others. He cited an example where he went to see Mahathir to explain the postponement of several mega projects due to a budget deficit but his proposals were rejected and he was told to continue spending.
Abdullah said Mahathir was furious when several mega projects including the double tracking (rail system) had to be delayed. He said if Malaysia had continued spending, he could visualise a scenario of the country going bankrupt.
“Under my administration, the country reduced the national deficit from 5 percent to 3.2 percent,” the nation’s fifth prime minister mentioned in the book.
The mainstream media have reported that Abdullah’s book was not his thoughts but that of writers’ with different backgrounds including opposition leaders.
Seri Setia assemblyman Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad who also contributed articles to Abdullah’s book echoed this line of thought.
Nik Nazmi, who is also the Pakatan Rakyat communication director, said the book, edited by Bridget Welsh and James Chin was a collection of opinions from various parties about Abdullah’s time in power.
“The theme of the book is the general evaluation and thoughts of the public throughout Abdullah’s administration. Both the editors had also interviewed Abdullah to get his thoughts and opinions,” Nik Nazmi said.
“Besides that, the book also gathered articles from various quarters including Barisan Nasional leaders, opposition members, academics and professors,” he said, adding the likes of former Selangor Menteri Besar Dr Mohd Khir Toyo and former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Zaid Ibrahim had also contributed.
Gua Musang MP Tan Sri Tengku Razaleigh Tengku Hamzah also wrote the foreword for Abdullah’s book.
Some parties who have read part of the book have commented that it slammed Mahathir more than telling the actual story.
It was also revealed in The Malaysian Insider last week that an authorised biography on Abdullah is expected to be released late next year. The book was commissioned early this year and will cover his life from before Merdeka until recent years. – August 11, 2013.
The book has been seen as the Opposition particularly from PKR attempting to take a swipe at Fourth Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad whose leadership, policies and projects undertaken under his watch brought the transformation, physical, quantitative and qualitative growth of Malaysia. The most progressive and productive 22 years brought Malaysia to a point where the country could plan for a developed nation’s status by year 2020.
When Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak took over as the sixth Prime Minister in April 2009, he followed through Tun Dr. Mahathir’s policies and strategic economic development projects. This include reinstatement of the Electrification Double Tracking Project where PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah cancelled weeks after taking over on 1 November 2003.
It drew a lot of negative attention and remarks to a point where authors Bridget Welsh announced that the official launch of the book planned next week has been postponed. it is because “It is being politicized” and “Not to promote misunderstandings”.
The fact is that Welsh and Chin earlier planned for the book to be launched in Singapore at the end of the month by PKR Vice President Nurul Izzah Anwar. If that is not construed as “Political’, why is she complaining about the book “Being politicized”?
That is on top of the fact that Welsh and Chin themselves have been very political instead of academicians. Their remarks about Malaysia have been negative and nothing less of ‘political statements’. The more interesting bit is that neither of them ever said anything positive about the Federal Government, policies and leadership.
PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah allowed himself to be interviewed and at length, it was used as the first chapter of the book. That provided the basis for the pro-Opposition duo to collate the works of 33 others, to be included in the 680 pager with a specific sinister agenda.
Welsh and Chin both are bent to use their academic stature and media network to promote the PKR cause, be it the liberalism policies or attacks on the BN Governement and partcularly to demonise UMNO and dismantle the strong coalition.
In summary, PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah is the ‘ventriloquist dummy’ of the Opposition.
So far, PKR leaders like Strategic Director Nik Nazmi have stepped up in the defense of PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah and the “Awakening, the Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Years in Malaysia”. Most glaring of all is the reaction of Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim, who was quick to use PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah’s “Awakening” as an ammonution to strike a fast one against UMNO.
Listen to Pak Lah’s criticisms, Anwar tells Umno
BY CLARA CHOOI
ASSISTANT NEWS EDITORAUGUST 10, 2013
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim press conference taken on 19 jun 2013. — Picture by Choo Choy May
PETALING JAYA, Aug 10 — Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi found an unexpected supporter in Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim today when the Opposition Leader commended him for daring to speak out against Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad – a known common enemy to both men.
Anwar said that while he may not agree entirely with Abdullah, he hoped the latter’s criticisms against Dr Mahathir and Umno would open the gates to greater discourse on matters that need attention within the ruling party.
“I think it is a healthy situation for ex-prime minister and ex-Umno president Tun Dollah to articulate his views… in some ways, defending his position against the incessant attacks, particularly by Dr Mahathir.
“It allows him the forum… let there be a healthy debate too,” he said in a video recording of a press conference posted online by news portal Malaysia Chronicle. Anwar was reportedly speaking to the media on the sidelines of his open house in Penang today.
“Hopefully the initiative taken by Tun Dollah, his assessment, will encourage a more vibrant debate, questioning the relevance of a party with obsolete ideas, racist policies.
“But knowing Umno, I don’t believe they will discuss substantive issues. It is still related to race, projects, pecuniary interests, benefits instead of substantive policy issues… because Tun Dollah alluded to the failure to undertake reforms within Umno,” Anwar pointed out, referring to Abdullah.
In a just-released book titled “Awakening: The Abdullah Years in Malaysia”, Abdullah tells a no-holds-barred interview that he disliked the “unwarranted attacks” against him by his successor Dr Mahathir and how the latter had used harsh words against him in public.
Although handpicked by Dr Mahathir to be his successor, Abdullah later came under relentless attack from the nation’s longest-serving prime minister and ultimately was forced to relinquish his presidency of Umno and position as prime minister to Datuk Seri Najib Razak in April 2009, after leading Barisan Nasional (BN) to its then-worst electoral showing in Election 2008.
“I didn’t like what Mahathir did. I gave Mahathir the opportunity to give me his views. I went to see him but he chose to be public in his attacks against me and my administration,” Abdullah said in an excerpt of the book that was reproduced by Malaysiakini earlier this week.
The PKR patronage demonstrate how PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah is a very valuable asset to their cause.
This was apparent between 2006-2009, because the Opposition focused so little towards PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah who then the Prime Minister but instead trained their guns at Deputy Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak.
PKR leaders’ attacks against the latter were voracious and vile which include fabricating the story that the murder of Mongolian national Altantuyaa Shaariibuu involved him and his wife, in connection with the corruption for the acqusiition of the two Perdana Class Scorpene submarines from DCNi and Thales of France.
It has been proven that the story plus the corruption of the Sukhoi SU30MKM multirole combat aircrafts first surfaced widely during the Ijok by-election in April 2007, was the basis of former abuse-of-power-convict Anwar Ibrahim’s campaign to demonise BN for Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim’s candidacy.
Like or not, PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah slept and allowed himself to lulled to sleep by the enemies.
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