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Pak Lah's Press Conference - malaysiakini

Pak Lah gave a Press Conference just a few hours ago.

I picked it out from Malaysiakini for you guys:

Below is Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's brief question and answer session with journalists after his 90-minute meeting with the Barisan Nasional component party leaders.

The press conference lasted for about 25 minutes. Before answering questions, Abdullah read out a prepared statement to announce his decision to step down next March.

What do you feel about stepping down?

I feel alright, I feel alright. The party BN still leads, BN is still the party that forms the government and I believe this government will be able to remain strong until the next general election, whenever that may be and Insya Allah we will win.

Will you be stepping down as prime minister?

Well at some point I have to hand over to my successor.

Who is your successor?

Well I hope it is Najib. Why do I say hope? Najib has to stand for Umno elections first. Once he wins the elections and becomes party president then we will discuss about it.

What do you feel about being forced out?

You ask them whether or not they force me out.

But you have been forced out earlier than planned and you have made it clear that..

I know that I did not do well in the last general election and I think it is time that somebody else takes over and there is nothing wrong about it.

Is this your final decision?


Do you feel sorry that you have opened up and liberalised a lot (of policies) and that this has come back to haunt you (or forced you out)?

I do not regret what I have done. How the people react and respond to them is up to them. What people think about it does not matter, what matters is that its done and this reform will take effect effectively. I have always believed and open to democratic discourse, I have believed it all this while and I made it known in my 2004 general election manifesto.

People always have the idea that the manifesto was meant specifically for the five years that I would be in power but the manifesto is something that spells out many things which I believe were different from what (Dr) Mahathir (Mohamad) was doing before.

Some would be the same, some would be different strategies because I was thinking ahead of the year 2020. I know I would not be around until the year 2020. If I am still around I would more than 80 years old and nobody would want an 80 year old man hanging around. Surely we would have the younger people ready to lead the party.

What is more important is that we've held up with what we do and I happen to believe in vision 2020 but I have also introduced the National Mission which I think is absolutely necessary.

I am the last of the (former Umno president and prime minister) Abdul Razak generation in the government to lead, after this there is no more. Razak's son will lead completely with new people.

Do the other BN component party leaders accept Najib as the new prime minister?

They accept the plan well. I leave it to them, I did not plead (for support), whatever they express are their own views, this is not a campaign event.

If there are those who still want to nominate you (to defend the party post) despite your decision to not defend your post would you accept it?

What can I do? If people want to do that I can't stop them but I already informed them earlier on (about my decision).

Will you pick a deputy for Najib?

4No I have no wish to pick a deputy for him.

You have just announced your reform agenda, will you consider abolishing the Internal Security Act and form the Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission before you step down?

There are certain things that I can do right away and there are certain things that requires a lot of time and maybe I don't have the time to do that.

Regarding your intention to strengthen the Anti-Corruption Agency and the setting up of the special judicial appointment commission, do you think you will face any obstructions?

Insyaallah there will be no obstruction, should there be any difference of opinions, I don't think it will be an obstruction. -