In Pekan, Najib claims lost to ingratitude and slander

Justin Ong
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak speaking at the Police Pensioners Congregation at Putra World Trade Centre, Kuala Lumpur January 15, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, May 20 — Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today offered his assessment of why Barisan Nasional lost the general election, blaming voters whom he said did not appreciate his government’s contributions and believed his rivals’ falsehoods.

Speaking to supporters in his constituency of Pekan, Pahang that he visited today after days of being cooped up in his Taman Duta mansion, the former Umno president maintained that his party and coalition did no wrong.

He insisted that the country’s progress and development were results on Umno and BN’s efforts and maintained that both conducted themselves with civility and courtesy during their unsuccessful general election campaign.

Among others, he listed down the aid given to fishermen, farmers, smallholders, Malaysians in general through the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) and raises for the civil servants as evidence of such efforts.

“However, what we have done, which I categorise as the success of the national transformation policies, has created an unexpected result.

“Unfortunately, what we have done, our contributions, did not receive the appropriate appreciation,” he said.

He also accused his political rivals of fighting not based on policies or ideas, but of using negative campaigning targeting him.

Najib claimed these had been excessively personal and hateful, adding that his side’s defeat was compounded by the “clearly undeliverable” promises made by the victorious Pakatan Harapan.

The former PM insisted that he would have no issue losing to the better side, but could not accept being beaten by rivals that he claimed did not contest on merits.

He also questioned how the allegations made against his administration such as those claiming the country was nearing bankruptcy or already bankrupt, of mismanaging the economy, and more appeared to vanish after PH won the polls.

Najib noted that the Bank Negara Malaysia quarterly announcement shortly after the general election showed that the country’s growth remained robust.

“Ladies and gentleman, can it be that, in just three days, they turned the economy completely around?

“Do they have a magic lamp? Aladdin’s lamp? That in three days, the country no longer needs saving?” he asked.

He said that if democracy was a contest of ideas, then the results of GE14 were not that of a democracy.

Najib’s speech was interrupted by the sound of heavy machinery running nearby, drowning out his remarks.