No guarantee on successor, says Malaysian PM Mahathir

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When asked how he feels that the same person he was to pass his premiership to 22 years ago is the same person he is going to pass the torch to once he steps down, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he could not guarantee if the person chosen to be the premier would turn out to be a good leader.

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad says that he cannot give any guarantee on his successor.

He said that he will one day leave and a replacement will take over his post.

"I cannot guarantee. When I picked Abdullah (former prime minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi), I thought he was good because he was religious, but look at what he did."

"Then, his replacement was Najib (Razak), Tun Razak's (second prime minister Abdul Razak Hussein) son, an icon. Surely he will be good."

"But look what has happened," he said during the Bicara Minda Sinar Harian forum, which was moderated by journalist and former Media Prima chairman Johan Jaaffar on Monday (Oct 22).

Tun Dr Mahathir said he could only promise that Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim will take over when he resigns as prime minister.

"I will go one day and surely there will be a replacement. If the people want Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, they have the right to have Anwar."

"I cannot guarantee it… all I can do is I promise that after I resign, Anwar will take over, but it will be up to the people to choose," said the 93-year-old prime minister.

Anwar, the PKR president-elect, recently took his oath of office as Member of Parliament for Port Dickson after having won the by-election for the constituency.

The Pakatan Harapan coalition had agreed prior to the May 9 general election that Mr Anwar would succeed Dr Mahathir as prime minister in due course.

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