Mahathir to reveal ‘surprise’ at Nothing2Hide forum

(FMT) – Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad will announce a programme he has planned “for the people’s benefit” at the Nothing to Hide 2.0 forum organised by PPBM Youth.

PPBM Youth exco member Mohd Ashraf Mustaqim, who revealed this today, said the programme would be a surprise.

The forum is scheduled to take place in Dewan Raja Muda Musa, Shah Alam, at 3pm this Sunday.

Ashraf also said the official letter inviting Prime Minister Najib Razak to attend had gone unanswered.

He said the letter was sent to Najib’s office on July 19 but the organisers were still hopeful the prime minister would make a surprise appearance despite the silence on the invitation.

“We assume he will come and use the platform to clear his name,” he told a press conference here today.

“But if he doesn’t come, then we assume his absence means he is scared of the possibility that his secrets would come out.”

Mahathir, who is the PPBM and Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman, last month invited Najib to the forum, saying the two could have discussions on claims that he enriched his children while Najib could explain how he had RM2.6 billion in his personal accounts.

Although Najib had not commented on the invitation, other Umno leaders had advised him that, as the leader of the country, he did not need to waste his time by attending the forum where “whatever he said would be dismissed anyway”.

Ashraf, however, repeated Mahathir’s assurance that the forum would be conducted without bias.

He said that to ensure this, PPBM Youth had appointed lawyer Azhar (Art) Harun as the forum’s moderator.

Ashraf also urged members of the public who planned to participate in the forum to address their questions to both Najib and Mahathir in a respectful manner.

“We have sent a letter to the police last week, informing them of this forum. We hope they can provide security to ensure this forum will go on smoothly,” he said.

Meanwhile, commenting on Umno supreme council member Puad Zarkashi’s offer to replace Najib and debate Mahathir instead, Ashraf said Puad and other Umno leaders were all welcomed to join.

But as Mahathir was the “top dog” in the opposition coalition, only Najib had the standing to share a stage with him, said Ashraf.

“The rest can sit below with the other attendees. They can still pose questions to Mahathir, but from below, not from the stage.”

The first Nothing to Hide forum was held in 2015. Najib initially agreed to make an appearance but did not turn up after police advised him against it, citing security concerns.

Mahathir, who came to the forum unannounced, went on the stage to address the audience of about 2,000 people. He spoke for only about six minutes before he was escorted off the stage by the police.