Mahathir should withdraw and apologise for his remark at Malaysia Hall in London "that he wished to hang Karpal but that was just his wish, he had no power to see it happen"

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Tuesday): In his speech to Malaysian students at Malaysia Hall in London on Sunday, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad slammed Opposition leaders for promoting a "culture of hatred" against Government leaders and instilling "the feelings of hatred towards certain people Ö making them unable to think for themselves".

He said: "They close their ears, close their eyes and close their minds and refuse to listen, to analyse and seek the truth".

Although Mahathir was preaching against the politics and culture of hatred, it is shocking to see him so consumed by hatred and spite, particularly against DAP National Deputy Chairman and five-term MP for Jelutong, Karpal Singh who is facing the first test case in Malaysia and the Commonwealth of being charged for sedition in the course of his court duties as defence counsel for former Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Star of 31.1.2000, reporting on Mahathirís speech at Malaysia Hall in London,  touched on his reference to the issue of  Opposition politicians being charged for sedition.

Declaring that everyone was equal under the Malaysian law, Mahathir said:
"Even the King is not exempted if he beats up somebody. There is a peculiar thinking that Opposition lawyers should be an exception. Karpal Singh has said a lot of nasty things against us, he should have been charged long time ago."

I must say I am utterly shocked by the depth of Mahathirís hatred against Karpal as shown by this remark.

But what has shocked me even more is a report I have received of another remark the Prime Minister made about Karpal in his speech in London.

I am told that Mahathir had also said that "he wished to hang Karpal but that was just his wish, he had no power to see it happen."

My informant said that Mahathir was probably joking when he made the remark.

Mahathir should confirm or deny as to whether he had made such a remark, which is clearly no joking matter for a person holding the highest office in the land, as his remark would have a great bearing and influence on the outcome of Karpalís sedition trial.

If Mahathir had not made such a remark, then the issue  must be put to rest quickly, once and for all, so that it would not have any improper and unfair influence on Karpalís sedition trial.

If Mahathir had made such a remark, he should withdraw it unreservedly as well as apologise publicly, for this is clearly no joking matter when it could have a far-reaching bearing on Karpalís personal liberties and future, both political and professional.


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman