Malaysian minister Syed Saddiq tells court of 'soft tissue injury' after UMNO Youth member grabbed him
KAJANG, Selangor: Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman told a Malaysian court on Wednesday (Nov 6) that an UMNO Youth member grabbed him by his left shoulder and neck - causing "soft tissue injury" - before saying "you are stupid" in his ear, during an incident last February.
The 26-year-old minister said this on the second day of the trial against Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris - better known as Papagomo - who was charged on two counts of outraging the modesty and injuring the minister.
He said during the incident on the nomination day of the Semenyih state by-election, he was walking towards his car parked outside the nomination centre with three of his security officers.
"Across the road, there was a group of about 50 to 100 opposition party supporters and they were repeatedly hurling abusive words ... against us.
"We continued walking, but then a group of people began crossing the road and surrounded us. When we were surrounded we got anxious, nervous and scared, because we were 'outnumbered' by them," the Muar MP said.
After witnessing the actions of the group, Syed Saddiq said his security officer Mohd Amin Bacho, who is also the first prosecution witness, as well as members of the traffic police and some volunteers from an opposition party came to protect him.
"Although the police were on the left, one of them (from the opposition group), known as Papagomo, came running towards us via a drain to the right. He came right up to my side and grabbed my left shoulder and neck area.
"I kept moving forward and he said in my ear 'you are stupid' and there were a few more words I couldn't make out due to the alarming situation," the minister said.
According to Syed Saddiq, the pressure from the grip on his shoulder and neck which lasted for three to five seconds had caused pain, and he felt it once he reached his home.
"Without wasting any time, I lodged a police report and did a check-up at the University of Malaya Medical Centre (PPUM), and after examining me and taking an x-ray, the doctor informed me there was a 'soft tissue injury'. I was then given a painkiller shot and two kinds of medicine to take,” he said.
When asked by the prosecutor if he knew who Papagomo was, Syed Saddiq answered "yes", and pointed towards Wan Muhammad Azri who was present in the court.
Earlier, Magistrate Nor Afidah Idris also warned parties including Papagomo himself, his lawyers and the media to not release any statements that would mislead the public and interfere with the trial.
If found guilty of outraging the modesty of Syed Saddiq, Papagamo may be jailed up to five years, fined or both.
He may also be given a jail term of up to a year, or fined up to RM2,000 if convicted of intentionally causing injury to the minister.
The trial will resume on Jan 28.