Government credibility has plunged to a new low in the past 12 days as a result of the ham-fisted manner in which the Barisan Nasional government, spearheaded by the Prime Minister himself tried to discredit the allegation of Anwar’s arsenic poisoning.
The full backing of the whole cast of his Cabinet like the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi, the MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik, the Gerakan President and Primary Industries Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, the Minister for International Trade and Industry, Datuk Paduka Rafidah Aziz and the Minister for Rural Development, Datuk Anuar Musa, to discredit the allegation of Anwar’s arsenic poisoning, roping in the controlled media, only succeeded in widening further the government’s credibility gap with their most unbelievable self-serving responses, distortions and even untruths.
In the process, Mahathir and his cast of Cabinet Ministers have shown not only contempt for public opinion but also all notions of justice and fair play, as they are blatantly prejudging the allegation of Anwar’s arsenic poisoning, claiming that it was fabricated or stage-managed, when medical tests and police investigations are still underway.
Malaysians can still remember that almost a year ago, the Prime Minister told the nation and the world that Anwar’s "black eye" was self-inflicted. Events have proved that Anwar’s "black eye" was not self-inflicted, but was the result of a brutal assault by the then Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Rahim Noor when he was completely defenceless in the Bukit Aman lock-up, handcuffed and blindfolded, and the Royal Commission of Inquiry found that Anwar was nearly killed in that infamous assault.
As Anwar had proven to be truthful in the "black eye" episode when he said he had been brutally assaulted on the first night of his arrest by the police a year ago, the onus is on Mahathir to show that Anwar is not truthful in the arsenic poisoning revelation before he makes further allegations against Anwar.
As Mahathir had never admitted that he had wronged Anwar in alleging that he had inflicted his own "black eye", the Prime Minister’s latest allegation that Anwar’s arsenic poisoning was fabricated or staged-managed lacked all credibility whatsoever.
Mahathir should realise that only a Royal Commission of Inquiry into
Anwar’s arsenic poisoning can command public confidence that the government
is not up to some "white-wash" or "scapegoat" operation - just as a Royal
Commission of Inquiry could satisfy Malaysians that Mahathir was
not personally responsible for Anwar’s "black eye" and assault in the police
However, there are widespread skepticism that Mahathir had not known about Anwar’s "black eye" and the identity of the assailant until the finding of the Royal Commission of Inquiry, why no departmental inquiry was held as to how the Prime Minister and Home Minister was kept in the "dark" about Anwar’s "black eye" and assault in the very inner sanctum of the police high command in Bukit Aman and why Mahathir had not assumed Ministerial responsibility for Anwar’s "black eye" as he was the Home Minister at the time.
DAP reiterates our call for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into Anwar’s arsenic poisoning, and Mahathir and the Barisan Nasional government have only themselves to blame if they ignore public concerns on the issue to the extent that they cascade into the biggest crisis of confidence in Mahathir’s government since 1981.