Former Malaysian leader Mahathir Mohamad, 90, has urged anti-government protesters to step up their ‘people power’ movement to remove the country’s current prime minister, who is embroiled in a financial scandal.
The only way for the people to get back to the old system is for them to remove this prime minister
The deeply-respected elder statesman made his rallying call as he joined thousands on the streets of Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, day two of protests to topple embattled premier Najib Razak.
“There is no more rule of law. The only way for the people to get back to the old system is for them to remove this prime minister. And to remove him, the people must show people’s power,” said Mahathir, Malaysia’s longest-serving leader.
There has already been plenty of ‘people power’ in evidence this weekend.
Denouncing the premier as corrupt, huge crowds have poured onto the streets
of Malaysia’s capital – led by pro-democracy group Bersih – despite police declaring their demonstration illegal.
Huge Malaysian anti-government protests continue for a second day http://t.co/HGaotBRtQu— TIME.com (@TIME) 30 Août 2015
“I think we are showing that the people do have a huge power,” said protester Agilan Palani.
“We might not make a change tomorrow but this is a start to show that we are headed somewhere.”
Najib Razak denies wrongdoing and has so far weathered the storm.
But protesters want answers about reports of a mysterious transfer of $600 million – that is more than 530 million euros – into a bank account in his name.
Anti-corruption authorities say the funds were from an unidentified donor in the Middle East, just before a 2013 election.
Najib, 62, says he did not take any money for personal gain.