PUTRAJAYA: Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is a leader with a “super ego”, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (pic).
"If he fights, he must win, tries to win. Now he is not successful, he will be more aggressive with his words," he said in a special interview held in conjunction with the 2016 UMNO General Assembly.
The one-hour session was moderated by Hamdan Ahmir, while Utusan Malaysia Editor Datuk Zulkefli Hamzah and RTM television personality Sayed Munawar Sayed Mohd Mustar also participated in the event.
Najib – who is also Umno president – said Dr Mahathir's efforts to topple him through the Mahathir Declaration failed because it was legally and constitutionally invalid and rejected by the Meeting of the Council of Rulers last month.
Najib added that Dr Mahathir had no choice but to attack him as he felt that to destroy UMNO, the party president must be toppled.
"When Dr Mahathir was the Umno president, the same people who are with him today said he was worse. If we look back at the tapes, their old videos, they said Dr Mahathir was worse. This is the process of politics and political games. So now that he has not succeeded, he will be more aggressive in his words," said Najib.
Asked to share how he faced the condemnation calmly, Najib said; "I understand leaders like Dr Mahathir, his methods and the message that he uses."
Najib also said the strong support from party members as well as Barisan Nasional Members of Parliament were also factors which helped him.
"I see that PAS is also not with him. During the tabling of the Budget 2017, PAS did not support the Opposition’s rejection of the budget," he said. – Bernama