KUALA LUMPUR – Had he not ended up studying medicine in university, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he would have become a lawyer.
“I did not choose to be a doctor. I had no choice. In those days if they give you a scholarship to study anything, you just say yes; you don’t say no or I prefer to choose this or that.
“I wanted to be a lawyer. But I did not get a scholarship to study law. So now I am a doctor.
“I find that being a doctor provides many solutions to the problems of administration.
“Because a doctor must always solve problems in order to give the correct treatment. That kind of habit is still with me whenever I encounter any problem.
“I regard it (problems) as a sickness. I have to understand why and how it happens, what caused it and what is the probable solution, ” he said.
On another matter, he said the government was committed to reduce disparities between the rich and poor through the Shared Prosperity Vision 2030.
The government, he added, was concerned with the disparities between the different races, those living in the urban and rural areas, as well as the rich and poor.
He said that over time, the disparities between the rich and poor, as well as those living in the urban and rural areas, had become more extreme.
“And we know that when there is disparity between rich and poor, it will lead to confrontation, ” said Dr Mahathir.
He also noted that he was often accused of being corrupt during his first tenure as prime minister.
“Well, that is the accusation levelled at me. But what is the proof? Did I buy diamonds at RM27million (S$8.9 million) to give to my wife? I didn’t.
“In fact, we live a very ordinary life. Even my house is not grand, but you are still accused of corruption.
“What is important is that you don’t get corrupted by the power that you wield, ” he added.