Saturday, March 5, 2016

Signing Citizens’ Declaration does not make me a traitor, says Shafie

Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal said his signing the Citizens' Declaration with former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to press for Datuk Seri Najib Razak's removal would not make him a traitor to Umno. The Umno vice-president said he wanted to see the party image healed after being tarnished by the 1MDB financial scandal. "We should not be considered traitors to the party for demanding this. "We want to make sure the party will be strengthened and increase public confidence towards it," he said today during a visit to his constituency in Semporna, Sabah. Shafie was not present at yesterday's press conference, but he is among three Umno leaders who signed the declaration. The others are suspended Umno deputy president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and former Kedah menteri besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir. Shafie said the issues raised on 1MDB and the RM2.6 bilion political donation had caused the public to look down on Umno and also hurt the country's image. "If we do not manage this issue, it will destroy our reputation not only among locals but also at the international level as can be seen. "The problem needs a swift solution," he said. He added that the question of Dr Mahathir following the opposition did not arise as yesterday's event was organised by the former prime minister. "He is not following the opposition but the opposition is following him. "He (Dr Mahathir) is the organiser, not them," he said. Shafie said there was no need to question the call against Najib as Dr Mahathir had similarly urged for Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to step down. "There is no need to label any leader a traitor, they have every right to do so. "If we consider this a democracy, they have a right to voice their view. He (Dr Mahathir) is not calling for the government to be abolished, only that the prime minister step down, just as Dr Mahathir was asked to step down and Abdullah (Tun Abdullah) was asked to step down." Dr Mahathir yesterday launched the Citizens' Declaration signed by 58 civil society and political leaders. Muhyiddin and Shafie are expected to face action over their involvement in the declaration. – March 5, 2016.]]>

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