May 23, 2006 22:08 PM |
KUALA LUMPUR, May 23 (Bernama) -- Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he accepted MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu's explanation on the allegation that he did nothing for the Indian community when he was the prime minister.
"He rang up to say he did not say such a thing. You know, sometimes reporters, they write something that is not quite the same and sometimes the sub-editors may change what the reporters tell them.
"So, by the time you read them (the story), it may not reflect the actual essence," he told reporters when asked to comment on the allegation.
Asked whether MIC deputy president Datuk S. Subramaniam called him to explain, he said: "He did not ring me."
Recently, two Tamil dailies -- Malaysian Nanban and Makkal Osai -- quoted Samy Vellu as saying that Dr Mahathir did nothing to help the Indian community to improve their economic status.
The dailies reported that Samy Vellu made the statement at the Johor MIC Convention last Tuesday when a delegate questioned why the Indians failed to achieve the three per cent equity share under the Eighth Malaysia Plan.
On another issue, Dr Mahathir said the government could verify the rumours that it was Malaysia which offered to sell sand and use the Johor airspace to Singapore in return for the republic to agree to the bridge project at the Johor Causeway.
"Well, that is what I heard. Maybe, the government can verify whether there is, or there isn't. This government is very transparent. So, I am quite sure the government will tell everything, if you ask them.
"If you ask me, it is difficult because what I heard is rumours," he said when commenting on a Malaysiakini report.
On April 12, the Malaysian Government decided to abort the bridge project to replace the 81-year-old Johor Causeway after taking into account public sentiments on the sale of two billion cubic metres of sand over 20 years to Singapore and use of Johor airspace by its military aircraft.