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Mahathir insists being treated badly
Published on: Saturday, November 11, 2017

Kuala Lumpur: Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has disputed the government's claims over his entitlements.

He claimed the treatment against him was uncalled for as none of the other Former Prime Ministers were treated this way.

"This has never happened before to the previous prime ministers Tunku Abdul Rahman and Hussein Onn, who also did not support the governments of the day," said Dr Mahathir on his blog chedet.cc.

He said Putrajaya has withdrawn some of his perks and even barred him from using public facilities.

Dr Mahathir said the Member of Parliament (Remuneration) Act 1980 states that former prime ministers can use government airplanes for travel.

"But it's not allowed now. In fact, all those who lend me their private airplanes will be reported to the Prime Minister's Department," the Pakatan Harapan Chairman said.

He said that while he had resigned as Proton's advisor, he was sacked as Petronas advisor and Chancellor of Universiti Teknologi Petronas.

On the subject of security, the Bersatu Chairman said he was given two outriders and four Special Action Unit guards after he was pepper-sprayed in 2006.

"But this has been pulled back now, although the other former prime minister (Abdullah Ahmad Badawi) still has his," said the former Umno President.

The government, he said, has also stopped letting him use the government's lodging in London and replaced his office staff and cook.

Dr Mahathir also said that the government used to rent an office for him at the Perdana Leadership Foundation, but after the lease had ended, he was asked to move to a government office instead, which he said he found unsuitable.

The former Barisan Nasional leader said he has also been barred from using federal government, BN-controlled state government and city public facilities.

"Owners of private halls have also been warned not to rent to anyone who invites me to speak," he added.

The Prime Minister's Department issued a statement earlier to say that it has never revoked any facility accorded to former prime ministers, including Dr Mahathir.

The statement said that the government still provided personnel for his office at the Perdana Leadership Foundation and at his residence in line with the Member of Parliament (Remuneration) Act 1980.

Meanwhile, DR Mahathir said there is no reason to provoke Indonesians using the controversy of his Bugis remarks as they are not voting in Malaysia's 14th general election.

In a letter to Malaysian Ambassador to Indonesia Zahrain Mohamed Hashim, he said he did not call the Bugis community "pirates", and instead, had said Prime Minister Najib Razak might be a descendent of Bugis pirates.

"It's undeniable that long ago, there were Bugis pirates. There were also Malays who were pirates.

Nowadays, there are pirates in the Straits of Malacca.

Dr Mahathir's letter, dated November 1, was in response to Zahrain's letter on October 23, urging the Pakatan Harapan chairman to take the necessary action to clear the air between Malaysia and Indonesia.

Indonesian Vice-President Jusuf Kalla is among those from the republic who have called on Dr Mahathir to apologise.

Last month, the Malaysian embassy in Jakarta received a memorandum from the Indonesian Makassar Bugis Youth Association, expressing anger at Dr Mahathir's statement.

It was reported that the embassy has boosted security at its premises, citing concerns that anger in Indonesia would spill over.

Dr Mahathir has said he is ready to be investigated, following police's move to open two investigation papers on him over his allegedly derogatory remarks, which were made at the "Love Malaysia, End Kleptocracy" rally in Petaling Jaya on October 14.

The investigation papers were opened even before the Selangor Royal Court issued a statement, calling for Dr Mahathir to be investigated for sedition for allegedly inciting hatred towards those of Bugis descent.

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