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Anwar's right to contest Port Dickson: Mahathir
Published on: Saturday, September 15, 2018

Selangor: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad says he has no opinion over Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's move to contest in the Port Dickson parliamentary seat. The Prime Minister said the PKR-president elect rang him up from Hong Kong to inform him about contesting in the seat before the announcement was made.

"It is his right. I don't interfere in that area. I told Anwar that normally, I don't go on any campaigns for by-election, but I will endorse his candidacy," Dr Mahathir told a press conference Friday.

Asked if Anwar would be given any government position if he wins, Dr Mahathir said PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifudin Nasution Ismail made a statement recently that the party president-elect is not seeking any post.

"It must be Anwar. I'm not reneging my promise.

"The period of course is not very certain, but I'm conscious that I'm very old. In two years' time, I'll be 95," he quipped.

Dr Mahathir also confirmed that he had suggested that Muhammad Shafee Abdullah lead the prosecution team against Anwar Ibrahim during the sodomy trial four years ago, but said it was after the Umno lawyer warned him that the then attorney-general (AG) would not be able to secure a conviction.

Mahathir said Shafee had approached him and complained that then AG Abdul Gani Patail could not win the case for the prosecution.

"Shafee wanted so much to become the AG. He came to see me. He said the AG cannot win against Anwar in Sodomy II," "I said if you think you can win, you see Najib lah," Mahathir said, referring to former prime minister Najib Razak.

Shafee had said that his appointment to lead the prosecution team was one of the six demands made by Mahathir for Najib in exchange for support for his administration.

On Shafee, Mahathir said today: "According to him, I love him so much. You think now I am fighting Najib (Razak) because I love Shafee so much?"

Mahathir added that his meeting with Shafee took place when he was still in good terms with Najib.

Anwar was charged and convicted with sodomising his former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan. He spent more than three years serving his five-year jail term, before he was released following a royal pardon in the aftermath of the May 9 polls.

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