Malaysian ex-PM faces four police probes

Kuala Lumpur, April 11 (IANS) Malaysian former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad is under four separate police investigations for offenses including his recent call for foreign intervention in Malaysia’s domestic affairs.

Some of the investigations into the alleged offenses, including sedition, have concluded, said Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Khalid Abu Bakar.

Khalid confirmed one of the offenses Mahathir was being investigated over was sedition, but did not elaborate on the rest of the charges, EFE news reported on Monday.

The former prime minister told The Weekend Australian newspaper in an interview published on Saturday that without foreign interference and external pressure, there was little hope that current Prime Minister Najib Razak, under fire for the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal, would step down.

In response, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the former premier should not allow foreigners to get involved in the country’s internal affairs, adding he was going politically “berserk”, reported The Star Online on Sunday.

The United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) Veterans Club has also called for action against the former prime minister for his comments, saying he had cast aside his principles, Bernama news agency reported on Sunday.

“Clearly he has double standards. He did not want foreign interference during his time, but he himself is working to get the foreign powers to bring Najib down,” said UMNO Veterans Club Secretary Datuk Mustapha Yaakub about the former UMNO president.

Mahathir is leading a “Save Malaysia” movement calling for the embattled head of state to step down, and has recently filed suit against Najib alleging corruption and “misfeasance and breach of fiduciaries” in public office, over the 1MDB scandal that broke out in June last year.

Najib, who denied accusations in foreign media that he had received $681 million from the state investment fund, claiming the money was a donation from the Saudi royal family, was absolved of all charges by the public prosecutor in January.

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