PETALING JAYA: Opposition parties are unable to raise sufficient funds for their activities as the government has put the squeeze on their donors, charged Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Writing in his blog today, the former premier and Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman said although opposition leaders and members were willing to make sacrifices to fund their parties, the coming general election would need a lot more money.
He said posters, banners, public rallies, travel, campaigning, flags and many other materials would cost money.
“If we cut back on campaigning and attractive posters, the voters will not receive information on the opposition’s struggle, besides being unable to deny or reject effectively the allegations of government parties.
“However, the shortage of money is made up by our tenacious spirit and willingness to sacrifice whatever it takes in the interest of the people, religion and country,” he said.
Mahathir repeated his allegation that Prime Minister Najib Razak was putting the squeeze on opposition funding by using government institutions such as the police, Inland Revenue Department and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.
He claimed people with the means and willingness to donate to opposition parties were being threatened and pressured.
Inland Revenue officers would raid premises and make baseless demands for additional corporate tax, he said.
If their “targets” refused to pay up, their companies would be blacklisted, and their accounts and records seized which would paralyse their business, he added.
“If they are implementing a government-awarded contract or have applied for a contract, all will be terminated.
“Banks will be instructed not to extend capital or any form of loans to companies or individuals who support opposition parties.
“Additional taxes imposed can rise to tens, or hundreds, of millions.
“The entire business is disrupted and approvals may be delayed for months or years.”
Mahathir claimed small businessmen were also threatened until they were forced to close down their business.
“Now, accusations are made against business people ostensibly for money laundering, that they received their money illegally, such as through theft or drug dealings.
“No evidence or wrongdoing is shown. Just by making the accusation, the bank accounts of the accused are frozen. This results in the business of the accused coming to a halt. If a building is under construction, the work is forced to stop. The business people affected may even lose their sources of income completely.
“The victims dare not object or protest, as otherwise they will face even harsher action. If the victims take their complaints to the courts, hearings of their cases will stretch on for a long time, and they will suffer for years.
“So Najib’s slogan ‘cash is king’ is very true. To him, cash will determine victory.”-FMT NEWS-