KUALA LUMPUR, June 9 2018 : Datuk A Kadir Jasin today resigned as Head of Media and Communications of the Council of Eminent Persons with immediate effect.
He said the decision was solely personal in order to avoid further confusion among members of the public regarding his role in the Council and his views expressed in his blog and weekly column in the Sinar Harian newspaper.
“I have been diligently stating in the preamble of my Blog post that whatever views expressed therein were entirely mine. I was writing in my personal capacity as a blogger and had nothing to do whatsoever with whatever position I might hold.
“Unfortunately, that did not stop journalists and others quoting from the Blog from stating that I am Head of Media and Communications of the Council of Eminent Persons,” he said in a statement here today.
Thus, to avoid embarrassment to the Council and any possible conflict of interest on his part, Kadir said he had offered his resignation and was accepted by the chairman of the Council, Tun Daim Zainuddin.
In the statement, he thanked Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Daim for their trust and confidence in him and staff of the Media and Communications Unit for their diligence and hard work.
“I will continue to serve our beloved country and its people in the best way that I know how, which is with the nip of my pen.
On May 12, Dr Mahathir had announced the formation of the Council of Eminent Persons which advised the government on economic and financial matters during the transition of power by appointing five prominent persons to fill positions in the council.
The personalities were former Finance Minister Daim; former Bank Negara Governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz; former Petronas President Tan Sri Hassan Merican; corporate figure Tan Sri Robert Kuok; and a renowned national economist Prof Dr Jomo Kwame Sundram.
In addition, acting as the secretariat was economist Dr Muhammad Abdul Khalid, while journalism figure Kadir was appointed as Head of Media and Communications.
Meanwhile, in Kuantan, Pahang Pas Youth today lodged reports against Kadir and social activist Hishamuddin Rais for allegedly insulting the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA) Sultan Muhammad V.
Its deputy commissioner Andansura Rabu said a total of 15 police reports would be lodged at all district police headquarters in Pahang today to urge the police to probe against those who were trying to tarnish the image of the YDPA and Malay Rulers.
He said a police report was also lodged against three Facebook users under the accounts of Eloise Cian, Prem Keshan and Ahmad Ridzuan Shamsuri who allegedly posted inappropriate comments on the social media.
“We see that there is a trend by a handful of people who attempt to bring down and insult the YDPA and Royal institution. This requires stern action by the authorities to prevent it (such an act) from continuing to take place.
“Such a provocation must be stopped immediately and the Malay Rulers need to be protected so as not to disrupt harmony. All the people should respect the (federal) constitution and Royal institution,” he said after lodging reports at the Kuantan District Police headquarters here.
Kadir and Hishamuddin had been criticised by various quarters after posting articles on Sultan Muhammad V on their blogs.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun on Thursday said Kadir would be investigated under the Sedition Act 1948, Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 and Section 500 of the Penal Code.
Meanwhile, Hishamuddin lodged a police report yesterday denying that he wrote such an article and claimed that his blog was hacked by irresponsible quarters.
In Kota Baru, Pas deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said the government needs to take action to stop the spread of open criticisms being hurled at the Malay rulers.
He said such an act to criticise the Royal institution must be curbed at the early stage to avoid any polemic in the society.
“I can see that the foundation of the new Malaysia is press freedom. We have to admit that there is a need for press freedom but it should not be absolute. Absolute freedom will be detrimental to the country.
“So, there are things that we can openly criticise and there are things that need to go through the proper channels. All parties need to respect the existing channels,” he told reporters after joining 80 people from 17 ‘asnaf’ (deserving) families to shop for Hari Raya Aidilfitri preparation at a supermarket here today.
Tuan Ibrahim also said the constitutional monarchy being practised in the country should be respected and not to be disrupted by any quarters.
“As such, we are asking the government to curb such a culture. Do not allow that to eventually become a culture that it is okay for anyone to criticise, complain and write whatever they want,” he added. – Bernama