You can hardly find any crony during the time of the first three Prime Ministers, but one can certainly name many rent-seeking cronies when Mahathir was the Prime Minister.
“Cronies are lapdogs who polish a leader’s ego. In return, the leader hands out national favors to them.
“A nation’s assets, projects, and businesses should never be for anyone to hand out, neither for a king nor a prime minister.
“A true leader is the chief trustee of a nation,” Kuok writes in his book, alluding to allegations of cronyism linked to the nation’s leaders over the past few decades.
He added that any good leader could also rely on their fiduciary sense to set them on the right course if the nation lacks an established system to guide its leaders.
“A leader who practices cronyism justifies his actions by saying he wants to bring up the nation quickly in his lifetime, so the end justifies the means."
“He abandons all the General Orders, that is the civil-service work manual that lays down tendering rules for state projects.
“Instead, he simply hands the projects to a Chinese or to a Malay crony,” Kuok said, adding that government-owned banks are also forced to lend to the projects.
“Some of these cronies may even be fronting for crooked officials.”
Above is what Robert Kuok said.
When you hear the word "cronyism" in Malaysia, there is only one person in Malaysia you can think off.
Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka should include a picture of Mahathir in their Malay dictionary under the heading "Kronisme"
No one else comes close to the Bapa Kroni Malaysia.