KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 10 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak joined campaigning in Tanjung Piai not for the voters but to claim his innocence in the massive 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) financial scandal, DAP veteran politician Lim Kit Siang has suggested.
Lim referred to the former prime minister by his moniker of “Bossku,” claiming that Najib “not to campaign for the people of Tanjung Piai but for his own agenda – to claim innocence in the 1MDB scandal and the hope to be Prime Minister again.”
Lim, who is Iskandar Puteri MP in Johor, had said so in his speech last night while campaigning for ruling coalition Pakatan Harapan in the Tanjung Piai by-election.
Lim noted that the High Court in Kuala Lumpur will be deciding tomorroe whether Najib will have to enter defence or will walk free from a corruption trial involving seven charges over 1MDB former unit SRC International Sdn Bhd's RM42 million of funds.
Acknowledging that there are Malaysians upset that Najib remains free to roam around the country and is still not in jail, Lim pointed out that this was due to Pakatan Harapan's promise from the last general elections to carry out institutional and political reforms, including the upholding of rule of law and having an independent judiciary.
“If we put the former Prime Minister in jail without upholding the important principles of the rule of law and an independent judiciary, we will be violating our Pakatan Harapan election pledges and we will be no different from the previous Barisan Nasional Government which brought to Malaysia the infamy, ignominy and iniquity of being regarded by the international community as a global kleptocracy,” Lim said.
Najib's Facebook posts showed him as making a visit to Johor since yesterday to campaign for his Barisan Nasional coalition in the Tanjung Piai by-election, with photos also showing him donning a shirt with the words “MaluAperrrBossku.”
Lim said it was shocking that there are BN leaders who still defend Najib over his alleged role in the 1MDB scandal, noting that these leaders had initially kept a distance from him and the scandal in the aftermath of the 14th general election in 2018 where the coalition lost power.
Lim said, however, that MCA's Tanjung Piai candidate Wee Jeck Seng had welcomed Najib during the by-election campaign in Tanjung Piai, unlike in the Balakong by-election in Selangor last August where Najib promised to stay away from BN's campaign for an MCA candidate.
“Bossku was regarded as 'poison' by MCA in the Balakong by-election campaign last August, but in a matter of less than a year, BOSSku is regarded as a 'gem' by the MCA in the Tanjung Piai by-election campaign!” Lim said, describing the welcome by MCA's Wee as allegedly amounting to an endorsement of the 1MDB scandal.
The question is whether the voters of Tanjung Piai are going to emulate Wee Jeck Seng to endorse Bossku and his role in the 1MDB scandal, and to undo the historic and even miraculous decision of May 9, 2018 for Malaysia to make a clean break from the past of a global kleptocracy to become a leading nation of integrity in the world," Lim said.
The Tanjung Piai by-election will be a six-corner fight, with polling day set for next Saturday or November 16.