Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing


KUCHING: Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir’s goal for his new party to eradicate corruption and kleptocracy should not be relegated to merely lip service, Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing said.

He said that while it is an honourable objective, Dr Mahathir’s words must be translated in actions and that the former premier must practise what he preached.

“It’s about time that the Malaysian government stop corruption and kleptocracy not only in words but in deeds. Jangan cakap tak serupa bikin (walk the talk),” he said in a statement made available yesterday.

Masing said Dr Mahathir’s new party must rid itself of individuals with prior corrupt practices, adding that doing otherwise would impugn the credibility of the youthful party.

The deputy chief minister added, once the party is seen to lack credibility on the eradicating corruption and kleptocracy front, it will not be able to attract the interest of reasonable Malaysians.

“When that happens, it will become a laughing stock not only of Malaysians, but the rest of the international community,” he added.

On Friday, Dr Mahathir announced that he will be forming a new party which will be unaffiliated with either the ruling Perikatan Nasional (PN) or his former coalition partners Pakatan Harapan (PH).

“Our new party will not be tied by any political coalition, be it Pakatan Harapan or Perikatan Nasional,’’ he told a news conference in Kuala Lumpur.

The 95-year-old also said while he realises that there are now too many Malay political parties in the country, he asserted that they have deviated from its original struggles.