‘Not politically motivated’: Mahathir on arrests of former political leaders

LANGKAWI: The detention of several former leaders who now face charges related to abuse of power and corruption is not politically motivated, and is subject to the country’s laws and regulations, said Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Saturday (Oct 20).

He said the country had laws in place to ultimately determine whether those facing charges were guilty or otherwise.

Mahathir speaks

"The law does not exempt anyone, and in Malaysia, even the rulers are subject to the rule of law. Whether they are leaders or otherwise, everyone is subject to this law," he told reporters after officiating a gathering with farmers at the Langkawi Farmers’ Organisation Building.

Dr Mahathir was asked to comment on the recent arrests of UMNO leaders for alleged corruption, including that of UMNO president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

He said before Pakatan Harapan took over the government administration in May, there was gross misconduct by the previous leadership, including pressurising certain parties to pay higher taxes.

"This is not in accordance with the law. The national law cannot ‘use’ the Inland Revenue Board to impose higher taxes," he said.

He said this was in contrast to the present government which did not put pressure on anyone, but rather allowed the law to run its course.

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