Yes, it’s OK, we around here are indeed aware that a royal pardon in Malaysia comes from the Monarch of Malaysia, not from the newly elected Prime Minister. But there’s still a certain cheek in Mahathir Mohamad pushing through this idea of a pardon for Anwar Ibrahim. For according to our own – all too faulty at times – memories, it’s Mohamad who insisted on Ibrahim ending up in jail in the first place.
The newly-elected Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad has said the country’s monarch is willing to grant a full pardon to the jailed politician Anwar Ibrahim – beginning the process by which he could shortly succeed him.
The announcement came a day after the 92-year-old was sworn in after a shock win that toppled a long-ruling coalition mired in a $3.2bn corruption scandal.
“The (king) has indicated he is willing to pardon Anwar immediately,” Mahathir told a news conference in Petaling Jaya.
“We will begin the … proper process of obtaining a pardon. This means a full pardon. He should be released immediately when he is pardoned.”
Anwar and Mahathir, former allies and then implacable foes,
We don’t claim specific and detailed expertise in Malaysian politics but we’re aware of the general line. That Ibrahim’s jailing was trumped up as a method of getting a troublesome heir off the political scene. Various human rights groups and foreign governments have indicated – at the least – a certain unease at the treatment. As to who was responsible, well….there’s just a certain irony at it being Mohamed arguing that he should be let out, that’s what we’d like to say on that subject.