September 24, 2012
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 24 — Former Cabinet member Datuk Zaid Ibrahim said today he would rather be ungrateful than stupid, as he mocked Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for suggesting that Malays who were unappreciative would cause the community to lose political power.
Dr Mahathir told Umno’s Utusan Malaysia in an interview published yesterday that Malays were “ungrateful” and “lacking intelligence”, warning that the greed of a few power-hungry Malays in the opposition would see the country’s dominant race lose its political power.
The former PM also alleged that “if any of these Malay (opposition) parties win the elections and form the government, this government would have to follow the dictates of other (races).”
Responding on Twitter this morning, Zaid (picture) said: “I rather be called ungrateful Malay than a stupid one, who doesn’t think, who follow blindly the dictates of arrogant Malay leaders.”
Zaid was part of Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s Cabinet but was sacked in 2008, a few months after he resigned as minister in protest against the government’s decision to use the Internal Security Act (ISA) to arrest an opposition politician, a blogger and a journalist.
He became a PKR member before eventually quitting, and is now the leader of an opposition-aligned party, while continuing to push for political and law reforms.
Dr Mahathir has become in recent months a vocal campaigner for Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s Umno, and his growing influence has seen the party shed many of its reform plans in favour of playing the race card.
Yesterday, in his lengthy tirade against the Malays, the former prime minister expressed sadness that the Malays were now purportedly split into three factions and said that this has resulted in them “begging” for support from the other races.
At another function, Dr Mahathir also suggested that currency speculator George Soros was attempting to usurp political power from the Barisan Nasional (BN) government by appointing his own leader as the next prime minister of Malaysia.
The former prime minister made this statement when asked to comment on several local NGOs that were in the limelight recently after the Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Ministry called on the Registrar of Societies to investigate Suaram, which has received funds from Soros.
Commenting on this, Zaid also mocked Dr Mahathir on Twitter yesterday by saying that if English football club Manchester United won their match against Liverpool yesterday, it must also be because of Soros.
“If Man U wins then Soros must hav a hand in this.”
In another tweet, he added: “Malays must be really stupid to believe the Jewish conspiracy to install puppet PM.”