Rais calls Malott remarks outdated

(Bernama) – KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 11 — Information Communication and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim today described as outdated the criticism hurled at Malaysia by former United States ambassador to Malaysia John R. Malott, and said the latter’s intention was purely dirty politics.

He said that as an envoy, Malott should not take sides or adopt a stand which clearly reflected his political leaning.

“When he was the ambassador in Kuala Lumpur, Malott enjoyed the modernity and progress of our country. Of course, he preferred to associate himself with the opposition. We abhor such an envoy.

“We have to regard him as a political practitioner who is nothing more or less than (Opposition Leader) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim or as one of the members of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) in Kuala Lumpur,” he told reporters after MIC President Datuk G. Palanivel had called on him at his office, here.

Rais was asked to comment on Malott’s article titled “The Price of Malaysia’s Racism”, recently carried in The Asian Wall Street Journal, critical of the 1 Malaysia concept initiated by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Malott had said, among others, that racial and religious tensions were higher today than when Najib took office as the prime minister in 2009.

Rais said Malott’s criticism was baseless because the judicial system, the parliamentary system and the national education system moulding 1 Malaysia denizens were realities which people like Malott did not comprehend.

“I am amazed that The Asian Wall Street Journal was willing to publish such an article,” he said.

He said the intention behind the article was dirty politics. — Bernama