The DAP leader wants the PM to sue the Economist and MSNBC for publicly calling him a “thief”

KUALA LUMPUR: DAP veteran leader Lim Kit Siang has dared Prime Minister Najib Razak to sue international media outlets, the Economist and MSNBC, for publicly calling him a “thief”.

“In the first time in 61 years of the nation’s history, the prime minister has publicly been called a “thief”, not once, but twice within two days, by two international media organisations on completely different issues,” said the Gelang Patah MP in a statement today.

He was referring to the Economist’s article on March 8 which was titled ‘Stop, thief! Malaysia’s PM is about to steal an election’.

The report alleged that Najib feared that most voters would not vote BN to power again if given a choice, and was “taking their choice away” by means of gerrymandering and malapportionment, among other tactics.

It cited the 1MDB scandal, in which US authorities say billions of ringgit have been misused, as the main point of argument.

Then on Match 9, American television host Rachel Maddow of MSNBC news programme also called Najib a “thief” in her ‘The Rachel Maddow Show’.

Maddow made detailed mention of the 1MDB scandal from the time of the “Arab donation” matter to the latest developments including  Indonesian/FBI seizure of Jho Low’s billion ringgit luxury superyacht Equanimity in Bali last week and the Wall Street Journal report on its review of a cache of emails which revealed that an aide and  donor of US President Donald Trump had asked for US$75 million from 1MDB mastermind Jho Low to get the US DoJ to drop its 1MDB investigations.

“Will Najib sue? Will the Malaysian prime minister clear his own name and reputation, if not for his own sake, at least for the sake of the Malaysian nation and 30 million Malaysians?” asked Lim.

He added that it was not only the US, Australian, British, European and other international media that have been reporting about the 1MDB scandal but also Asean media, with Indonesia’s leading current affairs magazine Tempo highlighting  the 1MDB scandal and the alleged cover-up by the Malaysian government.

Lim said Najib cannot continue to behave as if “he has eyes that see not, ears that hear not and mouth that speaks not”.

“He has no option but to clear his own name and that of the nation,” said Lim.