Malaysia gay sex video: Azmin asks how mobile numbers of PKR leaders were leaked

Malaysian Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali said Parti Keadilan Rakyat needed to find out who had access to all the phone numbers that the gay sex video was leaked to.
Malaysian Economic Affairs Minister Azmin Ali said Parti Keadilan Rakyat needed to find out who had access to all the phone numbers that the gay sex video was leaked to.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

KUALA LUMPUR - Stung by a sex video that was distributed to the mobile numbers of many leaders of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) via WhatsApp, its deputy president Azmin Ali said the party must find out who had access to those numbers.

He said the video clips first spread last Tuesday (June 11) in new WhatsApp groups created by anonymous senders. Many journalists and PKR members were included in the groups.

"These WhatsApp groups contained all the contact numbers of branch leaders and lower-ranked branch level office bearers," said Datuk Seri Azmin on Sunday (June 16), as quoted by The Star online news.

"I don't have access to this information. The question is who provided this information to create these WhatsApp groups.

"There are groups for Sabah, Sarawak and the peninsula." 

PKR member Haziq Aziz has said that he is one of the two men in the video, and claimed the other man was Mr Azmin.

Economic Affairs Minister Azmin has denied it was him, saying the claims were part of a plot to end his political career.

Mr Haziq was detained by the police last Friday and released on Saturday as part of investigations into the viral video.

 
 

Mr Azmin said PKR leaders should take note that there were members of the party who were seen with Mr Haziq when he was released from the police station in Kuala Lumpur.

"This is alarming. The leadership must take a bold decision and investigate," Mr Azmin said, as quoted by The Star.

His comments reflect suspicion in his camp that PKR members from another faction might have been behind the video's release.

Sodomy and oral sex are outlawed in Malaysia, and homosexual relations are deeply taboo, although it currently remains unclear if the sordid video is evidence of a crime.

Mr Azmin and PKR president Anwar Ibrahim head two rival factions in the party, which has the biggest number of MPs - 50 - in the Malaysian Parliament.

Datuk Seri Anwar on Saturday rubbished speculation that his supporters were behind the video's release.

The claim by the Azmin faction is that Mr Anwar sees his deputy president as a threat to his rise as Malaysia's next premier after Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad.

Mr Anwar said on Saturday: "There is already an attempt to slander one person (Azmin) and the reason why that happened cannot be justified by another slander.

"Secondly, why would I or my supporters be involved in it?"

He added: "Some people say it's because he (Azmin) is a threat, but we already have an agreement on my position and the PM himself said this as recently as last week."

 
 

Mr Anwar said all four member parties of Pakatan Harapan (PH), the alliance that governs Malaysia, have agreed that he would take over from Tun Dr Mahathir some two years after PH took power.

PH won power in the general election in May last year.

"All four from PKR, DAP, Amanah and Bersatu are in agreement that I be made next PM as per our agreement," he said as quoted by The Star. He was referring to the Democratic Action Party, Parti Amanah Negara, and Dr Mahathir's Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia.

Meanwhile, veteran DAP leader Lim Kit Siang has expressed concern that the sex video scandal could destroy the New Malaysia agenda, The Star reported.

He said the scandal, which grabbed national headlines in the past week, is PH's greatest challenge since last year's polls.

"For four days, the country has been agog, haunted and hounded by the sex video implicating a minister, which demonstrates its potency to destroy the Pakatan coalition and derail the New Malaysia agenda.

"Pakatan leaders must unite to forge ahead and not be derailed from the New Malaysia agenda," he said in his blog on Sunday.

"This is why I advocate that the important principle must be re-established – that no one in Malaysia is above the law, whether (it is) the prime minister, Cabinet minister, attorney-general, inspector-general of police or other officers of the state."

Mr Lim, the MP for Iskandar Puteri in Johor, said the focus of the next parliamentary session starting on July 1 should be the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) Bill, not the sex video. 

The Bill aims to make the police more accountable for its actions, including for the deaths of criminal suspects while in police custody.

"Let us then make the July meeting a IPCMC Parliament by passing the IPCMC Bill next month so that the IPCMC can be set up – some 14 years after it was first mooted in 2005," he said.