Anwar Ibrahim ‘shocked’ by arrest of aide over sex video implicating Malaysian minister

Anwar Ibrahim ‘shocked’ by arrest of aide over sex video implicating Malaysian minister

PKR president Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the media after winning the Port Dickson by-election
Parti Keadilan Rakyat president Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the media after winning the Port Dickson by-election on Oct 13, 2018. (Photo: Justin Ong)

KUALA LUMPUR: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) president Anwar Ibrahim on Wednesday (Jul 17) said he was "shocked" to learn of the arrest of his political secretary in connection to the dissemination of a viral sex video implicating a Cabinet minister.

"I am shocked as I am not sure why he was arrested. But police must have their own reasons to do so," he was quoted as saying by the Malaysian Insight.

"The party has already sacked Haziq Aziz (who confessed to being in the video). Now the truth and justice will be revealed. Police are professional and we need to respect their investigations."

He added that Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali should resign if it is confirmed that he was involved in the video.

“My initial view is for him not to resign. It will depend on investigations. If the investigation is conclusive, in terms of the participants of the act, then I think he needs to resign,” said Mr Anwar.

“But if we haven’t ascertained the truth and the veracity of the people in the videos, then he has the option (of staying on).”

Mr Anwar also stated that PKR rejects gutter politics

READ: Sex videos a weapon of choice in Malaysian politics that distract from other issues

In a sharp retort, Mr Azmin said: “Look at the man in the mirror.”

“Ask Anwar to ‘muhasabah diri’ (carry out self-introspection) and reflect on himself,” the minister was quoted as saying by the Malaysian Insight.

According to Malaysian media reports, Mr Farhash Wafa Salvador Rizal Mubarak - who is Mr Anwar’s political secretary and PKR’s Kuala Kangsar, Perak division chief - was among three men detained on Tuesday. The 37-year-old was said to have been nabbed at a house near Pasir Gudang, Johor.

The arrests on Tuesday came after the police arrested Mr Haziq and five other people over the weekend in multiple locations across the Klang Valley.

The six of them are being held for investigation under Section 377B of the Penal Code for carnal intercourse against the course of nature, as well as Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 for improper use of network facilities.

They will remain in remand until Jul 20. Several of them are believed to be PKR members.

Mr Haziq has confessed to being the man in the video and named Mr Azmin as the other party.

Mr Azmin, who is also from PKR, has vehemently denied the allegation, calling it a nefarious plot by his opponents to assassinate his reputation and character and destroy his political career.

Mr Farhash has earlier called for Mr Azmin to resign if it is proven that he was involved in the sex video.

There have been suggestions that supporters of Mr Anwar were responsible for the video in a bid to topple Mr Azmin, but Mr Anwar has refuted the allegations.

‘NOT GUILTY UNTIL PROVEN’: MAHATHIR ON WHETHER AZMIN SHOULD TAKE LEAVE

Earlier on Wednesday, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, when asked for a comment regarding Mr Farhash’s arrest, replied: “This is the first time I’m hearing (this).”

READ: No need for Malaysian minister Azmin Ali to take leave over sex video probe: PM Mahathir

He noted that the incident has been about politics and not about exposing wrongdoings.

“It’s about politics in order to prevent somebody from being able to succeed in politics. It’s a political scheme that is definitely intended to prevent somebody from succeeding.”

The prime minister added that any leader under investigation by the authorities has the option of going on leave or remaining on duty so long as he or she has not been proven guilty.

“You can take leave or you can carry on (being on duty). You are not guilty until proven,” he said.

Source: CNA/Bernama/aw(hm)

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