By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal
PETALING JAYA, Oct 17 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday brushed aside Khairy Jamaluddin’s call for Malays to end their siege mentality, pointing out that perhaps “some of us are already successful.”
But the former prime minister said there were still many Malays who found it hard to make a living.
Dr Mahathir said last night he believed Malays still had a siege mentality because of their relative poverty.
“Maybe the average Malay feels that he is under siege, so to speak because he does not earn enough,” said Dr Mahathir.
He was commenting Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin’s speech at the Umno general assembly.
“Well, maybe some of us feel that we are already successful, so we don’t need to be under ‘siege’,” said Dr Mahathir.
Khairy had this week urged Malays to end their siege mentality and emphasise Malay leadership as opposed to Ketuanan Melayu, or Malay supremacy.
His call to end the siege mentality was virtually blacked out by Umno’s Malay-language newspapers. Only English-language newspapers, vernacular and online media published stories emphasising the siege mentality part of his speech.
Khairy was also criticised by a number of right-wing Umno blogs, with many likening his remarks to something which Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim would say.
When asked last night, Dr Mahathir — a fierce critic of Khairy — declined to say whether he agreed or disagreed with the Umno Youth chief’s remarks.
“I’m not saying I’m agreeing or disagreeing with what he (Khairy) said. I don’t have to agree or disagree with anything.”
Khairy has been forced to defend his remarks after receiving flak from right-wing elements in the party.
The Malaysian Insider