PUTRAJAYA: Calls for Datuk Seri Azmin Ali to take leave while police probe the sex video implicating him do not hold water, says the Prime Minister.
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the Economic Affairs Minister could stay on the job because he was not obstructing investigation and the allegation was not a crime.
“This is a political thing. In fact, it is intended to embarrass him (Azmin) and to ask him to take leave.
“I don’t like this kind of political (play),” he told reporters at the Prime Minister’s Department Hari Raya open house yesterday.
Azmin was among a number of Cabinet Ministers who turned up at the Hari Raya do, along with Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
When asked about previous calls by Pakatan Harapan for Barisan Nasional ministers to take leave or resign when there was an investigation, Dr Mahathir said if the probe was over some wrongdoing or crime, then the person should take leave.
“Why (should Azmin take leave)? Police can continue with the investigation. He (Azmin) is not going to be an obstruction,” he added.
In the past week, video clips of sexual acts involving two men have gone viral, followed by a confession by Santubong PKR Youth chief Haziq Abdullah Abdul Aziz that he was one of the men in the clips.
Haziq, who is the former senior private secretary to Deputy Primary Industries Minister Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Md Akin, claimed the other person was Azmin.
Azmin has categorically denied the allegation, saying it was made to tarnish his reputation and destroy his political career.
Dr Mahathir, when asked if he, as Pakatan chairman, would step in to prevent PKR from possible infighting following the sex video controversy, he said he had no plans to do so.
He also said he had not asked Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador to brief him on the probe into the case.
Dr Mahathir was also asked about a proposal by Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s leader for Dr Wan Azizah to step down as deputy prime minister, to which he replied that party members were free to make proposals.
“They have the right to make a proposal. Whether I accept it is a different matter,” he said.
Selangor Bersatu treasurer Mohd Shaid Rosli had urged Dr Wan Azizah to step down if PKR wanted the power transfer between Dr Mahathir and PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to occur within the year.
Dr Wan Azizah had said she would stick to the agreement made by Pakatan, which had earlier approved Dr Mahathir as Prime Minister and her as the deputy when taking over the government.