In 2013, a popular Prime Minister Najib Razak riding high on the image of being a leader for all Malaysians was an asset for an Umno-led government that was seen as unfair to Malaysia's ethnic minorities.
But in the campaign for the May 9 general election, Datuk Seri Najib is seen as both scandal-hit and responsible for unpopular policies, such as the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the removal of subsidies, making him a liability for the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition, government sources and analysts say.
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