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New Malaysia PM Anwar Ibrahim refuses to use his office’s official Mercedes S600

Anwar Ibrahim, who was appointed as Malaysia’s new prime minister on Thursday after days of post-election limbo and decades of political struggle, is wasting no time in setting a reformist tone for his new administration by declaring on Twitter that he would not be using the luxury car previously purchased by his new office.

On Sunday night, Anwar posted this tweet in which he says, “I would like to inform you that yesterday I refused to use a Mercedes S600 type vehicle that was purchased and obtained by the Prime Minister’s Department before I entered the office.”

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In follow-up tweets, he said that he made this decision because he did not want any new expenses incurred on his behalf and that he would use other vehicles available to his office for daily use.

The retail price of a Mercedes-Benz S600 is between RM700,000 (US$156,000) and RM1.9 million.

His tweets echo remarks he made on Saturday night following a trip to the Sungai Long mosque in which he said that his office would not buy any new cars or carry out any renovations to prevent the waste of public funds. He has also previously pledged not to take a personal salary.

“This is a message to all department leaders to remember that in the current situation we should start a new culture. Don’t use government money for our own facilities,” said Anwar.

Read also:

Anwar Ibrahim’s long journey: Once a prisoner, now the 10th prime minister of Malaysia

In the wake of his surprising election triumph, a look at the tumultuous political career of the man many Malaysians are pinning their hopes for lasting reform on.

25 Nov 2022