KUALA LUMPUR: Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali shared how she managed to hold hands recently with two handsome world leaders while on official functions abroad with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The Prime Minister’s wife related the incidents in a light-hearted manner where she held the hands of the President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan.
“My daughter-in-law saw the reports online and she teased me that she was ashamed of me flirting with Putin.
“Putin was one of the leaders who came to our humble house during an official visit to Kuala Lumpur years ago.
“He came to visit during the 10 years when we were sidelined,” she said, adding that Putin insisted on visiting them at home when Dr Mahathir met him at the hotel.
“So he came to our house, which was the smallest with no fence and not like other palaces.”
Dr Siti Hasmah said that Putin invited them to visit his house when they went to Moscow.
Earlier, Dr Siti Hasmah attended a cheque presentation ceremony by Global Doctors Malaysia to three NGOs here yesterday evening.
During the 33rd Asean Summit in Singapore last month, Dr Siti Hasmah recalled further that Putin insisted on meeting up again.
“We were all staying in the same hotel. He had over 100 security personnel protecting him.
“Eventually the guards let us in. After shaking his hand and meeting him, of course, we had to take pictures, right?
“I had to hold someone’s hand, so I held his. Why are you so envious? What’s wrong with that?” she asked in jest, leaving the crowd in stitches.
Dr Siti Hasmah, who won hearts globally after the video of her gleefully asking to hold Imran’s hand went viral, said she did that because Imran also visited their home.
“He was another illustrious son who came to our humble home. Twice he came to Malaysia and twice he came to our home.
“That’s the reason why. They treat me as their mother.
“So what’s wrong with that? Why are you jealous?” she said, as the crowd erupted in another round of laughter.
Revealing that she has poor eyesight, Dr Siti Hasmah said: “I can’t see your faces. In most instances, I don’t even recognise my own children until I hear their voices when they come and kiss my cheeks.”
She also related an embarrassing incident where she mistakenly held the hand of another man while on an official visit in Tokyo with Dr Mahathir.
“I was so ashamed. I scolded my husband and told him that’s what happens when you’re not beside me.
“So take care of your eyesight and hearing so that you don’t end up in embarrassing situations like this,” she added.
Meanwhile, a total of RM111,000 was presented to three NGOs – the National Autism Society of Malaysia, Malaysian Rare Disorders Society and Childline Malaysia.
It was presented by Global Doctors Group chairperson Datuk Dr Sharifah Fauziah Alhabshi while Dr Siti Hasmah witnessed the handover.
The sum was raised during a charity dinner held on Nov 16.