Swear on the Quran, Mahathir challenges Anwar

(The Star) – Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has challenged Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to show evidence that he (Dr Mahathir) had sought help from the World Bank during the financial crisis in 1999.

“I also challenge Anwar to swear on the Quran in a mosque that I had written a letter to the World Bank asking for funds,” he said after attending a forum at SMK Agama Al-Irshad near Tasek Gelugor here yesterday.

“I’m willing to swear in a mosque that I did not write such a letter,” he said.

Dr Mahathir said the Federal Government would not have sufficient funds to pay civil servants’ salaries if it had received the loan from the bank and followed the bank’s conditions.

Dr Mahathir said he had warned Anwar, a former finance minister, that Malaysia would become a slave to the World Bank if the country borrowed money from it.

On Friday, Anwar claimed that Dr Mahathir had written to the president of World Bank appealing for funds in 1999.

Anwar had said he was unaware of Dr Mahathir’s action as he was jailed in 1999 and only discovered it during his consultancy work for the World Bank after he was freed.