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Mahathir says he'll stay in office for 1-2 years

16 May 2018

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Tuesday said he intends to remain the nation's leader for "one or two years" after leading the opposition to a stunning election victory last week. "The prime minister has given his assurance that the meeting of the pardons board will proceed as scheduled now at 11 am (0300 GMT) on Wednesday". "I'm not in a rush". The police action followed a complaint lodged by two leaders of the youth wing of Mahathir's political party, Bersatu.The police report of the complaint, reviewed by Reuters, alleges that vans emblazoned with the logo of the department of the prime minister and cabinet delivered boxes for 50 Birkin handbags to Pavilion Residences on Thursday evening.The report alleged that the boxes showed the name of the consignee as Rosmah Mansor.

In an astonishing U-turn past year, Anwar shook hands with Mahathir and agreed to join forces to oust scandal-tainted Najib.

The volatile relationship between the duo has dominated the country's political landscape for over three decades.

Mahathir was Malaysia's prime minister for more than 20 years. He and his supporters have said the charges are politically motivated.

Anwar and Mahathir agreed in 2016 to join forces with the aim of ousting scandal-hit Najib Razak and his Barisan Nasional (BN) alliance.

As a matter of fact, despite being labeled as an autocratic leader by western media and his notorious fondness for grandiose undertakings during his time in office as Malaysia's prime minister between 1981 and 2003, Mahathir has been leaving a strong impression among his fellow citizens over the years. Mahathir sacked and jailed Anwar on charges of sodomy and corruption.

Asked if Najib would go to prison, he said: "It all depends on the investigation being made and whether there is a case against him or not".

"We have discussed this together and we hope that under Dr. Mahathir everything will be dealt with smoothly", she told reporters at the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital, where Anwar, 70, has been undergoing treatment.

The scandal is being investigated in at least six countries, including Singapore, Switzerland and the United States.

Mahathir was spurred out of retirement by a corruption scandal at 1MDB, a state fund that is being investigated by the USA and several other countries after associates of defeated Prime Minister Najib Razak allegedly stole and laundered $4.5 billion from it.

Billions of dollars are believed to have been siphoned off from the fund, with most reportedly disappearing overseas, while $681 million also mysteriously appeared in Najib's personal bank accounts in 2013. He has ordered a travel ban on Najib and his wife and replaced the former attorney general Mohamed Apandi Ali, who was appointed by Najib.

Najib set up 1MDB in 2009 and previously served as chairman of its advisory board. He has denied wrongdoing.

The alliance between Mahathir - who has been prime minister before - and Anwar came after years of feud as the latter was first jailed after Mahathir dismissed him as deputy prime minister in 1998.

Mahathir says he'll stay in office for 1-2 years