KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today said only the “blind, deaf and dumb” would say there is no difference between his administration and that of the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) government.
He said some people only saw the bad things even when there were a lot of changes and reforms that had been introduced in making the administration more efficient, effective and transparent.
“Did we borrow RM42 billion? Did we have our own 1MDB? Did I steal money? Did I bribe people? Prove it if I bribed people and you can take me to court and charge me.
“We are going to limit the term of PM (prime minister) to two terms. Did Najib do that? We debate on 1MDB, but did Najib allow debates on 1MDB and anything else? Nothing ... to say there is no difference, only a blind, deaf and dumb person will say that.”
Dr Mahathir was speaking to reporters after opening the 62nd International Statistical Institute World Statistics Congress 2019 (ISI WSC 2019) at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
The prime minister was asked to comment on a statement by DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang that there were people who were going all out to undermine PH.
He said these people did not appreciate the good things that they had received from PH’s leadership.
“They say there is no difference (between PH and BN) ... they only see the bad things because they want to bring down this government,” he said.
Meanwhile, in his speech, Dr Mahathir urged the young generation in this country to understand and grasp the importance of statistics in imparting knowledge.
He said the word statistics might sound irrelevant to some people, but the truth was that statistics played an important role in people’s daily lives.
“Statistics connect us to what is happening around us and help us make good decisions and lead better lives.
“In order to shift Malaysia successfully as a leader in the digital economy, the country needs young minds to connect with people, businesses, devices, data and processes,” he said.
Dr Mahathir said he could not stress enough on how important the role of statistics was in national development.
He said statistics on population and demography, education, health, public safety, communication and recreation were used to monitor the nation’s quality of life and well-being.
“The statistics of GDP (gross domestic product), inflation rate, poverty, income inequality and gross national income per capita are used to gauge the economic performance and national wealth.
“Ultimately, these statistics are vital for implementing the shared prosperity approach to ensure the income gap and people’s wealth would be looked into, to create a more structured, progressive, knowledge-based and high-value economy, and to ensure Malaysia becomes an important economic axis in Asia,” he said. — Bernama