Mahathir named in Time magazine's 100 most influential people list

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, 93, was described as a "formidable old warhorse" who "dazzled during a gruelling campaign".
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, 93, was described as a "formidable old warhorse" who "dazzled during a gruelling campaign".PHOTO: EPA-EFE

KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Described as a formidable old warhorse, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has been listed in Time Magazine's 100 most influential people this year, following the historic election victory that swept him back to power in the May 9 polls last year.

Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle Brown, who wrote the profile summary for Tun Dr Mahathir, described the 93-year-old as a "formidable old warhorse" who "dazzled during a gruelling campaign".

"You don't have to be young to fight the power.

"Take Dr Mahathir, the former Malaysian prime minister who came out of retirement last year to lambast his former successor Najib Razak, who is accused of embezzling millions of dollars from the 1MDB fund."

Ms Rewcastle Brown said that not only did Dr Mahathir's campaign gather vast crowds, but his reliance on core values also helped to unite electoral groups, and his age enabled him to gain the trust of regular Malaysians.

"Now 93, Dr Mahathir has committed to hand over power to the former leader of the opposition, (Datuk Seri) Anwar Ibrahim, 71, who he released from jail days after his victory.

"For Malaysia, the episode has re-established democracy in a country that almost teetered into totalitarianism," she said.

The Pakatan Harapan chairman is listed in the leaders' category with the likes of United States President Donald Trump, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, and Chinese President Xi Jinping, among others.