A Reformasi Diary by Sabri Zain

Malaysia's top brains answer the call for a PM 'replica' December 13th, 1998

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 . . . . Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said Sunday he would like his next deputy to be an "extact replica of myself" . . . . . Mahathir, who sacked his deputy Anwar Ibrahim in September and had him arrested 18 days later, reiterated the he did not want to appoint a new deputy until the party holds its annual assembly in June next year. …. "At the moment I am listening to views. No, I have not made up my mind yet," the 73-year-old premier said. Mahathir said he had "quite a lot" of candidates in mind. "Some fit here, some fit there. If they fit complete, they will be my twin but I do not have a twin," he said. 
- Agence France Press

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 .... In true 'Malaysia Boleh!' (‘Malaysia Can!’) tradition, scientists in universities across the nation today unveiled breakthrough research projects aimed at fulfilling our Prime Minister's desire for a 'replica' of himself.

Speaking at a special general assembly of the ruling United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) yesterday, Dr Mahathir had said that he would like his next Deputy Prime Minister to be an "exact replica of myself", and, while there a lot of candidates, "some fit here, some fit there ... if they fit complete, they will be my twin, but I do not have a twin"

Trying to find that perfect 'fit', scientists in Science University of Malaysia and the Nuclear Research Institute announced a new research project aimed at genetically 'cloning' Dr Mahathir. Called "Project Maha Dolly", scientists will attempt to genetically engineer DNA in embryonic cells and implant them in suitably patriotic UMNO Women’s Wing members to produce offspring genetically-identical to the Prime Minister.

Special microbial strains will be developed and molecularly-cultured with the embryo to produce attributes desirable of such a 'replica'. These include 'viagra politicus' for political staying power; 'xenophobia rabidus' to produce an intense dislike of foreigners; 'judiciae disgustus' for a healthy dislike of independent judges; and 'resistanceis futili' for a vigorous dislike of dissent.

According to project leader Dr Frank N Stein, another team will even investigate developing suitable DNA for cloning UMNO Supreme Council members. "So far we have identified a close DNA match with tissue samples taken from domesticated sheep," he remarked with pride.

Asked how the team were going to obtain DNA samples of the Prime Minister himself, Dr Stein said that they have engaged the Special Branch as special consultants for this purpose. "We understand that during the Anwar Ibrahim investigations, they somehow remarkably managed to extracting bodily fluids from even ordinary household items such as stained mattresses."

He also revealed plans for mass-producing and marketing these DNA cultures. "We want to offer loyal, patriotic Malaysian parents the supreme joy of hearing the pitter-patter of little Mahathir feet in their homes," he said with tears of joy in his eyes. 

Scientists from Technology University of Malaysia are taking a different approach - they will be constructing a fully artificial android to look like, walk, talk and behave like the Prime Minister. Using the latest robotics technology developed for producing the Made-in-Malaysia Kancil car and the finest software developers from the Multimedia Super Corridor, the team has already produced a talking head. "We even got that grimace-like smile down to a tee," said team leader Professor William Gates. "The talking head has already chaired numerous cabinet meetings and made executive decisions - and no one seems to have noticed the missing body," Gates added, beaming with pride.

"At current production rates, we can have models ready to replace the full Cabinet line-up by the end of the year," he remarked.

In true entrepreneurial spirit, Gates also talked of the possibility of mass-marketing do-it-yourself kits for sale at department stores. "Just put a few screws, nuts and bolts together and -presto!- you have your very own personal Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Home Minister and Finance Minister ready to do your every bidding." Gates has already received advanced bulk orders from local companies seeking government contracts.

Gates also highlighted the advantages of his robot. "Anytime you don't like the android, you don't need to spend millions of ringgit bribing witnesses, months cooking up slanderous stories and possibly years in court to get rid of him. Just send the model back to the workshop for re-programming," he quipped.