Dr M says not attacking Najib because of ‘crooked bridge’ snub


(Malay Mail Online) – Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad denied today claims that his recent attacks against Datuk Seri Najib Razak were because the latter reneged on his pledge to construct the “Crooked Bridge” linking Johor to Singapore’s side of the Causeway.

Instead, the former prime minister insisted that he was speaking out against Najib because of the many “unanswered questions” to a number of issues plaguing the administration like the 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) controversy and the murder of Altantuya Shaariibuu.

“If I was angry because of the ‘crooked bridge’, I would have demanded Najib resign before the 13th general election. Instead, I campaigned for Najib’s victory.

“Najib’s leadership in Selangor has been ineffective,” Dr Mahathir said in a latest posting on his blog.

“Many of my questions were not answered. Instead, its been made to look like my actions are because of the crooked bridge which has not been built,” he added.

Dr Mahathir then went on to claim that those who have publicly shown support for Najib do not necessarily support the government’s handling of the 1MDB issue.

“They are scared. Some have asked me about 1MDB and asked me to do something. Now there are threats against those who have not stated their support for Najib,” Dr Mahathir said.

In a recent interview with blogger Din Turtle, the country’s longest-serving former prime minister claimed that Najib had broken his promise to construct the “Crooked Bridge”.

According to the veteran statesman, Najib had once said to the media that Malaysia would build the bridge, with or without Singapore’s agreement.

Last Thursday, Najib suggested that one of the reasons why Dr Mahathir had stepped up his criticism of his leadership could be because of the “Crooked Bridge” project.

The second-term prime minister told TV3 in a televised interview that Dr Mahathir had wanted the project revived. Another reason, Najib said, is that Dr Mahathir had wanted the Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia (BR1M) cash assistance programme scrapped.

The so-called “Crooked Bridge” was Dr Mahathir’s idea to replace the Causeway, but was discontinued by his successor, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, and believed to be among the reasons why the latter was hounded out of office by the man who put him there.

In recent remarks, Dr Mahathir said he could no longer remain silent and that the days for diplomacy have long passed, adding he will now push for Najib’s resignation openly.

He said the prime minister’s refusal to address allegations such as those surrounding 1MDB and linking him to the murder of Altantuya has put Barisan Nasional’s (BN) rule at risk.