1MDB critic and former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s pet projects lost more money combined, compared with the RM42 billion of debts racked up by the state investment firm, said G25 member Tawfik Ismail.
Tawfik said he told Mahathir this when Mahathir reached out to the group of eminent Malaysians 'between March and April' this year, to recruit them for his campaign to oust Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
“(He) talked again about the money purportedly lost in 1MDB.
“However, I told him again that if we look back at the present value of what Dr Mahathir had lost during his time as prime minister, I am sure the amount of money would be more than what was alleged to be lost in 1MDB.
“He kept quiet after that,” Tawfik said in an interview with the New Straits Times today.
Mahathir yesterday said that Tawfik, whose father was former deputy prime minister Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman, is not to be trusted.
Mahathir also confirmed he proposed a ‘Council of Elders’ who would advise on the appointment of a prime minister.
Tawfik told the NST that he did not take kindly to Mahathir’s suggestion and told Mahathir this was undemocratic and unconstitutional.
“The discussion was muddled by his obsession to get rid of Najib.
“Personally, I think probably Dr Mahathir is someone who wants things to go his way. He is on a power trip,” he told the Umno-linked daily.
He said Mahathir’s legacy, however, is a legacy of ‘betrayed trust’.
This includes compromising the judiciary and concession agreements which are now burdening Malaysians.
“It seems that many things that we are paying for is because Dr Mahathir had allowed for a non-transparent way of operating.
“Take the toll hike, for example. Whose fault is that? Who made the initial agreement between the government and the concessionaires?” he asked.
“In terms of his ability to do good and keep the trust of the people, I think he has failed in many ways.”
He also felt the same about former deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin, whom he said proposed the G25 join a ‘third force’ in politics with Muhyiddin and an ‘East Malaysian personality’.
He said Muhyiddin left many unhappy when he was Johor menteri besar over the management of land.
“I reminded Muhyiddin that there are so many things that he and Dr Mahathir did that people have not forgotten.”