Empty talk not my style, says Malaysia PM as he declines debate

He also pointed out that debates were also not part of Malaysia’s political culture.


October 26, 2022

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said empty talk and making false promises by using debate as held by Pakatan Harapan in the 14th General Election is not his way.

It would be better for him to focus on serving the people and devoting more attention to the preparations ahead of GE15 in terms of people’s safety rather than engaging in debates, he said.

“It is better for me to personally meet people from various races, as well as the social strata as a family,” said the Prime Minister in a Facebook post yesterday.

Earlier yesterday at a function, reporters asked him about Pakatan chairman Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s proposal to hold a debate among prime minister candidates.

“Is it enough to gain popularity by making sweet promises in debates? He (Anwar) needs to have compassion for fishermen, farmers and even young people who have been deceived by the various rhetoric of debates done before.

“I suggest that he debate when the parliamentary session is held after the new government has been elected by the people. Or maybe on the stage of their respective parties, and there, no one will stand in the way because this country practises a democratic system,” he said.

He also pointed out that debates were also not part of Malaysia’s political culture.

On another matter, Ismail Sabri said Umno was considering stricter vetting on possible candidates for the elections.

“The respective state liaison committees have presented their list of candidates for the first round of discussion. We are looking to conduct stricter vetting of candidates, including checking with various departments including the police and Insolvency Department.

“We might even check with religious authorities to determine if the proposed candidates have any other offences,” he said.

Ismail Sabri was asked if the list of candidates for Umno had been discussed among the party’s top five leaders.

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