Sept 17, 08 3:40pm
Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has left political observers wondering if Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim could once again be detained under the Internal Security Act.
The premier issued a warning that appear to indicate the possibility of an ISA arrest for the maverick politician at press conference at Putrajaya this afternoon to announce a reshuffle of cabinet portfolios.
abdullah ahmad badawi najib razak pc change portfolio 170908 06'He has become a threat to the economy and possibly (national) security," he said.
This in itself provides sufficient grounds for the authorities to invoke the tough security law, which provides detention without trial against Anwar.
And when asked what action the government would take against him, Abdullah refused to reveal his cards, saying: "I will not indicate what plan I will take, what I do will be in the best interests of the people and the country."
"Because of Anwar's actions, there are fund managers who have reported that Malaysia is purportedly no longer a good place for investment because of the unstable political climate."
Abdullah said the opposition leader has lied a lot about the country's economic status, even claiming that there is no Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) coming in.
On the contrary, the premier said FDI is still flowing in and Malaysia is popular among investors.
"Anwar wants to destroy the country and exploit the people’s trust and tarnish the country’s image abroad."
Using the ISA against Anwar would undoubtedly have severe repercussions but such a move would not come as a surprise after three individuals, including an opposition politician, were nabbed under the draconian law last Friday.
James Chin, a political analyst from Monash University's campus in Kuala Lumpur, said Abdullah's comments were a clear warning that Anwar could face arrest under ISA.
"If they arrest Anwar under ISA, it will not be accepted by both Malaysians and the international community," he told AFP.
More news at: Malaysiakini