Malaysia gay sex video: Accuser says Azmin Ali's aide told him to lie about affair

Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali's political secretary Hilman Idham holding up a copy of the police report he made yesterday. He had asked the police to investigate the sex videos purportedly showing Malaysian government official Muhammad Haziq Ab
Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali's political secretary Hilman Idham holding up a copy of the police report he made yesterday. He had asked the police to investigate the sex videos purportedly showing Malaysian government official Muhammad Haziq Abdul Aziz and the minister.PHOTO: BERNAMA

He recounts meeting KL minister's political secretary after the sex videos surfaced

A day after igniting a firestorm with a video confession on Facebook, Malaysian government official Muhammad Haziq Abdul Aziz returned with more explosive allegations about Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali yesterday - this time accusing the minister of trying to get him to lie about the affair which he said began three years ago.

In a Facebook post, Mr Haziq said that after the sordid videos started being circulated on Monday, he was urged by the minister's political secretary Hilman Idham to lie about the affair.

"I was scared, and the only comfort I received from you was when you sent Hilman to meet me at Zest Restaurant in Marriott Putrajaya on that fateful day. I waited for an hour, and it felt like I was a mere afterthought," he wrote on Facebook yesterday. "He forced me to deny that it was you in the viral video and asked me to lie for you. I asked for more time to consult my parents, and this angered him. After I refused, he made threats and said this will be shut down within 48 hours with or without my help to lie.

"It broke me that Azmin Ali, the man I looked up to, chose to tie his loose ends rather than owning up to his mistakes. I know you are a sick man because only you could have recorded the videos for personal collection after inviting me to your hotel room on all occasions."

Mr Haziq, the principal private secretary to Deputy Primary Industries Minister Shamsul Iskandar, also said that only Datuk Seri Azmin could have recorded the widely circulated videos of their alleged sexual encounter last month.

His shocking Facebook post in the morning marked another day of surprises as the saga that exploded on Tuesday continued to grip Malaysia. Later in the day, local media reported that Mr Haziq had been suspended from his duties and asked by the ministry to provide an explanation for his accusations within three days.

Mr Azmin, who is also the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) deputy president, had on Wednesday categorically denied that he was one of the men in the videos, calling them an attempt to destroy his political career.

 
 
 
 

Mr Haziq, who is also a PKR member, claimed yesterday that he was first invited to Mr Azmin's room at the Grand Continental Kuching three years ago, and then again in the Sarawak capital last October in the midst of party polls.

He alleged that the relationship continued in Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur in March, before the most recent encounter during last month's Sandakan by-election.

Mr Hilman has confirmed meeting Mr Haziq on Tuesday, when the videos first surfaced, but refused to comment further "as we have handed over all details to the police" yesterday morning.

Mr Hilman, who is also the PKR deputy youth chief, also made a report with the Islamic authorities alleging qazaf, a term referring to slander related to adultery.

"I am worried that more videos will be leaked, and the luxury you have as a minister is deniability, whereas my future is over. You even have the Prime Minister pledging his full support before any formal investigation had been done," Mr Haziq added, referring to Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's dismissal of the videos on Wednesday night.

"Only the truth can set me free as I am concerned for the safety of my family and mine. I hope the public will see you for who you truly are - manipulative and having immense influence all together with your henchmen Hilman, Afif, Zuraida and the rest of your inner circle who are motivated by greed and power," he said.

Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin and Penang state executive councillor Afif Bahardin are strong allies of Mr Azmin in PKR.

Mr Haziq was formerly part of Mr Afif's team when the latter was PKR deputy youth chief, before joining the office of then Law Minister Nancy Shukri as an intern prior to Barisan Nasional's defeat at last year's election.

He then won the youth leadership of a PKR division in his native Sarawak last year before being hired by Datuk Seri Shamsul, who is also the party's information chief.

The clips were first leaked by unidentified phone numbers to WhatsApp groups in the early hours of Tuesday. Malaysian journalists made up the majority of those added to these groups. An additional clip of the same alleged incident was released late on Wednesday.

Police say they are investigating the case, but have given no details.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 14, 2019, with the headline 'Accuser says Azmin Ali's aide told him to lie about affair'. Print Edition | Subscribe