Bully boy Zahid uses KDN to threaten journos again

Is it the Ministry of Home Affairs or the ministry for protection of loudmouthed political bullies?

Is it the Ministry of Home Affairs of all Malaysians or the ministry for protection of loudmouthed political bullies?

• Zahid twists facts, claims attacks on him are attacks on KDN
• Then accuses journalists of “spinning” to suit political interests

Facing intense political pressure over a letter that he wrote under the KDN letterhead to an alleged gambling kingpin, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has now tried to use Home Ministry staff against journalists in order to save his arse.

At a monthly staff assembly, he claimed that “the home ministry is under attack. Yes we are.”

This is despite the fact that no one in the past weeks has criticised the ministry itself or its civil servents, only Ahmad Zahid and the letter that Zahid wrote, using his ministerial position, to vouch for Paul Phua, who is on trial in the United States for running an illegal World Cup gambling ring.

Zahid, however, tried to turn the criticism as if they were attacks on the ministry.

When we execute our duties not everyone will be pleased. We cannot please everyone. All they do is scrutinise us. There are many good things that we have done but they never report it. But when there are a few bad things, they focus only on that. This culture of spinning has become something of a norm. — Malay Mail Online

The minister conveniently twisted the fact that he is the one being criticised, for writing on KDN letterhead, for committing the Malaysian Government into an endorsement of Paul Phua: the FBI, relying on a report from Malaysian police, says he is part of the Hong Kong-based 14K Triad.

There has been no clarity on whether the Cabinet approved or endorsed the letter, or its being sent to the FBI, while Zahid has claimed that he has the authority to issue such a letter. The Foreign Minister has said one thing and Wismaputra another.

What is clear is that the letter was written after Umno’s legal fixit man, lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, approached Zahid on behalf of the US lawyers for Paul Phua. The Royal Malaysia Police has stayed silent on whether, as Shafee repeatedly claimed, the information supplied to the FBI about Phua and 14K was “totally wrong”.

Zahid’s letter, about an alleged gangland member, comes two years after he was reported to have said he was “friends” with Malay underworld groups — after which he made threatening remarks about Malaysiakini, which had exposed his speech in a video.

Zahid, his gang “friends”, and threats to journos

The Paul Phua letter was exposed by the South China Morning Post, which published the full contents as well as an image.

It was the latest of a series of reports — none from the pliant Umno-owned or Umno-controlled media — that exposed Zahid’s doings.

On at least three occasions, in 2013 and 2014, Zahid berated reporters in a clear attempt to intimidate them and their editors.

Zahid Hamidi harrassing Malaysiakini Laurence Yong

A Malaysiakini video in 2013 shows him harrassing reporter Laurence Yong who had asked Zahid about RM1.3 million losses in police weapons and other equipment mentioned in the Auditor-General’s Report 2012.

In 2014, another video clip by Malaysiakini shows Zahid apparently speaking favourably about the “Tiga Line” underworld group, one of 49 secret societies listed by the Home Ministry in a supposed crackdown on organised crime. Malaysiakini reported that Ahmad Zahid told mostly Umno members at a government function that Tiga Line were his friends.

Malaysian Insider, quoting Malaysiakini, reported what Zahid had said:

Of the 14,511 who were secret society members, 6,171 were Malays but they are not real thugs. They are Pekida members and part of the Tiga Line group, Gang 30 and Gang 7. I tell our Tiga Line friends, do what should be done. We are not evil, I know. I have checked, we gather during festivals with our siblings, we gather when there are projects. I see here, the candidates here, all four of them are Tiga Line.

Bully boy Zahid threatens journos again

In September 2014, Malaysiakini reporter Susan Loone was arrested by police under the Sedition Act for reporting a politician’s remark about being treated “like a criminal” after his detention during police action against a state-sponsored community service volunteer group which the police claim was infiltrated by secret society members.

Also in September Zahid created a huge row over a report in the Sun, in which he was reported to have commented that non-Malays were arrogant and had demanded that the reporter see him. If the reporter “has the guts”, the reporter would go and see him and explain the article, Zahid said. (The repporter was also alleged to have gone missing after an official from KDN was said to have gone to the Sun’s offices, seeking the reporter, who happened to be off that day.)

He said if the article was not retracted, he would “know what to do” and the Sun later backed down, unnecessarily apologising for an apparent mistranslation from Malay to English.

Now, more threatening words from bully boy Zahid

Now, with his political fortunes being threatened again after media exposure of his activities, Zahid has made more threatening noises about journalists.
In words similar to those he used against Malaysiakini in 2013, Zahid against turned to use of ministry powers against journalists.

We are watching you carefully. We are reading what you write line by line. Just because we are quiet doesn’t mean we will not act. When that happens, don’t call us cruel. — Malay Mail Online

Apa Lagi Zahid Mahu? Jadi Ketua PengarangIn May 2013, he had made similar threats about Malaysiakini: “I will scrutinise every statement, every sentence, every paragraph of Malaysiakini’s news. Don’t play with fire with me.”

What is clear is that Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who obtained a PhD with a thesis on Utusan Malaysia’s influence on the 2013 general elections, wants to throttle Malaysian journalism into the dozy compliance shown by lapdogs in Umno-owned and Umno-controlled media.

He wants Malaysian journalists to forego their professional duty to the citizens of the country and, instead, becoming willing tools of ruling-party politicians by not exposing the racism and misuse of power that exists, or by making excuses for these politicians.

Malaysian journalists must stand up to him, and all others like him.

Alyaa Alhadjri in The Ant Daily with a reminder on what journalism is about

Alyaa Alhadjri in The Ant Daily with a reminder on what journalism is about


1 thought on “Bully boy Zahid uses KDN to threaten journos again

  1. He talks and behaves in this manner because he doesn’t believe that he is answerable to the public which is the electorate that elected him. He says what he like as if he own the nation and he should be aware that he is an elected public servant and he has to perform his duties with utmost care and fairness . His job is to ensure that he is able to run the his ministry well and if he gets involved with scandals especially code of ethics like the letter he wrote to the FBI which deems him unable to fully perform his duties he should not be a cabinet minister. The press has every right to question his misgivings and he should face the press as required and explain his role. A parliamentarian should be scrupulous in his use of public (official) property and services and should not permit their misuse by other persons or himself.

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