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Malaysia ex-PM Mahathir calls on successor to quit

Written by: Staff
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PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia Sep 11 (Reuters) Former Malaysian premier Mahathir Mohamad vowed today to keep up his lonely attack on the government, calling on his successor to quit and daring authorities to jail him for his comments.

The 81-year-old made the remarks after his humiliating defeat within the ruling party at the weekend, when he failed in a bid to become a delegate at the party's upcoming annual assembly.

At the election on Saturday, Mahathir was unable to to win enough votes in his own home state to be elected as a party delegate. He had needed some 240 votes.

The man who led the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) to five straight general-election victories, and ruled for 22 years, polled just 227 votes.

''Either he changes or he steps down,'' Mahathir, who had wanted to air his grievances at November's assembly, said of his successor Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

''I will continue to expose all the misdeeds. They can try to shut me up. They can try to cut me out from all the media. They can try to stop me from talking....the only way they can stop me is to throw me in jail,'' he told reporters in Putrajaya, the administrative capital.

MORE REUTERS BDP SSC1610

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