KUALA LUMPUR: Umno has taken a dig at Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s trip to Japan, besides questioning if the government was facing internal bickering in filling the Foreign Minister and several other ministrial posts.
In a statement issued by its strategic communications unit, Umno said Dr Mahathir was attending the 24th Nikkei Conference as a “salesman” to lure Japanese investment to Malaysia.
This, according to Umno, was not surprising as Dr Mahathir had previously been accused of “selling Malaysia to Japan” when the latter was governing the country as the fourth prime minister.
“When he was in power then, there was already talk about this as there were many mega projects involving companies and funding from Japan.
“The only difference is that there was not much news about it then as there was no internet and also because the Internal Security Act (ISA) was used against his critics,” the statement read.
Umno said Dr Mahathir had accused the Barisan Nasional (BN) government of selling the country to China.
It questioned how his efforts to lure Japanese investment here were any different from what the previous administration had done by courting China.
The party also questioned why the government had failed to name its Foreign, Works and Youth and Sports Minister portfolios despite being in power for a month.
“It is strange that the government is taking so much time to fill these posts, as though it is facing a crisis in picking the candidates among its component parties.
“The people must surely be wondering what our foreign policy is going to be as any government would normally lay this out first when forming its Cabinet.
“It is all the more perplexing that the prime minister has gone to China without a Foreign Minister accompanying him.”
The statement read that Dr Mahathir’s administration had been transfixed in executing “political revenge” against former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) and Malaysia’s external debt which it claimed had been manipulated.
The party also claimed that the government’s decision to appoint Tommy Thomas as Attorney General and certain quarters attempts to undermine the Royalty had caused Pakatan Harapan to “fall into its own trap”.
“The government is now seen as one which is filled with hypocrites and those who are good at twisting facts.
“They have their own rating agency and are acting as “bodoh sombong” (fools) by not acknowledging official figures recognised by the World Bank and other internal agencies,” Umno said, adding Malaysia had become a “free for all” country or a “cowboy” nation where the rule of law only applied to certain people.