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IPOH, Sept 30 — DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang today said that former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak would have made Malaysia the Venezuela of South-east Asia and the “Sick Man of Asia” if the government was not changed in the last general election.
Lim said that Venezuela, which was once the richest country in the Latin America and the world, is now a poor and bankrupt state due to a terrible political, socio-economic and humanitarian crisis.
As for the ”Sick Man of Asia”, Lim said the term was previously referred to China, but economic reforms saw the country lift 850 million people out of poverty, with its per capita gross domestic product growing nearly 24 times from 1978 to 2017.
“If there had been no change of government, the re-elected Prime Minister would have made Malaysia the Venezuela of South-east Asia and the Sick Man of Asia.
“We would be steaming ahead to become the Sick Man of Asia by 2030 or 2040, and there would be even more imaginative and creative 2MDB, 3MDB or 4MDB scandals to shock the global political landscape,” he said in a statement.
The Iskandar Puteri MP also said Malaysia would have continued to become a failed, rogue and kleptocratic state under the administration of Najib, which lasted for about a decade.
“No power on earth could have saved the future generations of Malaysians, regardless of race or religion, from the status of serfs in having to repay the tens and hundreds of billions of debt conceived and implemented by “maestros” of unimaginable scams and money-laundering schemes to exploit the loopholes of the international banking and financial system,” he said.
While noting the deep and widespread disappointment over some government policies among the public, Lim backed the government to come good in its efforts to rebuild the nation.
“It is important that Malaysians must be able to understand that while the Pakatan Harapan government has to deal with an unexpected legacy of liabilities and debts, the government is still on track to build a New Malaysia to become a top world-class nation of unity, justice, freedom, excellence and integrity.
“The last thing Malaysians want is to see the country becoming Venezuela during the time of their children and grandchildren in 2030 or 2040, or an even worse fate,” he said.