Ghani should change his political advisers in the Gelang Patah contest as he is made to say things which undermines his reputation as a sober, rational and level-headed classic Malay gentleman
I am really flabbergasted. I am accused by the Johor Mentri Besar and Barisan Nasional candidate for Gelang Patah Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman of saying things about him which I had never done.
For instance, in an interview today with the UMNO-owned and controlled New Straits Times, which claims to be a newspaper when it is in fact a “lies-paper”, the Johor Mentri Besar was asked a loaded and completely untruthful question and Ghani gave an equally baseless and untruth answer because it was founded on lies and falsehoods.
This is the Q and A I am referring to:
“Question: Your opponent had tried to paint a picture of you being a Malay chauvinist. Do you think it will influence the Chinese electorate, who make up the majority of voters in Gelang Patah?
“Answer: It is cruel. I'm quite sad about the attempts to label me a racist. But Johoreans know me.
“I have been here for the past 18 years and the Chinese community here knows that I have always engaged them. I work with them directly on community issues as well as on education, culture and welfare.
“Since (Lim) Kit Siang decided to come here to contest (Gelang Patah), he has been provoking the Chinese.”
The interviewer from the News Straits Times “lies-paper” asked not only a loaded a question, but a completely fabricated query as I had never “tried to paint” Ghani Othman as “a Malay chauvinist” in my campaign in Gelang Patah.
Having been a four-term Mentri Besar for 18 years, Ghani cannot be so naïve as not to know that the question is not only loaded, but grossly unfair and untrue. How could Ghani answer a question that I had tried to paint him as a Malay chauvinist when I had never done so?
Surely, Ghani should have known what I said publicly about him, and if he does not know, let me repeat what I said on Monday, two days after Nomination Day, viz:
“The BN candidate for Gelang Patah, the four-term Johor Mentri Besar, Datuk Ghani Othman, is a classic Malay gentleman who is respected for his moderate and rational views. I have no qualms in giving credit to him for bringing development and progress to Johor in his 18 years as Mentri Besar.
“But he does not sound like himself in his first two pronouncements after the Nomination Day on Saturday, as captured by these Malaysiakini headlines:
Ghani rails against Pakatan’s ‘racial polarisation’
Ghani: If Kit wins, Hadi might be PM
“Ghani is sounding more like Perkasa leaders like Ibrahim Ali and Zulkifli Noordin as what he said is completely contrary to his image as a moderate, rational and level-headed political leader.
“Is this the price that moderate leaders have to pay if they are to stay and survive in present-day UMNO, whose most powerful leader is not Najib Razak but Mahathir?”
An experienced four-term Johor Mentri Besar would have sensed that there is something very wrong about the question, as it is so far from the truth from what I had said publicly about Ghani.
His protest that my attacks (which never existed) on him being so “cruel” causing him to feel “quite sad about the attempt to label me as a racist” is completely baseless as I had never called him a Malay chauvinist in Gelang Patah.
Why is Ghani playing to the tune portraying him as an “aggrieved victim” on attacks from me, when I had not done any such thing?
Equally baseless, unworthy and dishonourable in his attack on me in retaliation, saying:“Since (Lim) Kit Siang decided to come here to contest (Gelang Patah), he has been provoking the Chinese.”
Can Ghani quote chapter and verse as to when an where in Gelang Patah I had been “provoking the Chinese”?
It was former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir who accused me of wanting to cause “racial confrontation” in contesting in Gelang Patah, alleging that I want to cause the Chinese to hate the Malays.
I don't think Mahathir had made a more irresponsible and defamatory statement than this, which is why I have instructed my lawyers to institute legal action for defamation against the former Prime Minister.
Why did Ghani act as if Mahathir is speaking the gospel truth about my contest in Gelang Patah?
My invitation to Ghani to make the battle of Gelang Patan the model of a clean, free, fair and gentlemanly contest in the 13GE still stands.
If Ghani responds positively, I am prepared to meet him to finalise the ground rules as to how both of us can agree for the Gelang Patah contest to be the model of a clean and gentlemanly election contest in a general election which is expected to the dirtiest in the nation's history – stemming from Najib and UMNO/BN's kiasu and kiasi attitude about the possible outcome of the 13GE.
In any event, whether Ghani accepts my standing invitation to make the battle of Gelang Patah the model of a clean and gentlemanly contest in the 13GE, the first thing he should do is to change his political advisers in the Gelang Patah contest as he is made to say things which undermines his reputation as a sober, rational and level-headed classic Malay gentleman!