Ismail Sabri: Support letter not a guarantee

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 23 Aug 2020

TANJUNG MALIM: A letter of support is not a sure thing of getting an approval, says Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

“Many people come and ask for my support for various matters and I usually endorse them. But my support does not mean that the request will be successful,” he said in reference to his endorsement of the son of Deputy Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Ikmal Hisham Abdul Aziz, to be appointed to Pharmaniaga’s board of directors.

Ismail Sabri said this after attending a programme to present contributions to ex-servicemen at Felda Besout 2 yesterday.

The letter, which went viral on social media on Friday, contained a handwritten note, allegedly from Ismail Sabri to the Armed Forces Fund Board (LTAT) chairman.

However, the senior minister said he did not intervene in the appointment or follow up with the process.

Ikmal Hisham’s son was eventually not appointed to the LTAT board.

“His son is a graduate and a successful businessman, so we thought he could be helpful.

“But LTAT didn’t appoint him in the end. So there is no question of nepotism,” he said.

Ismail Sabri noted that Ikmal Hisham could have contacted the LTAT chairman directly as board appointments were under the ministry, but the deputy minister did not do so.

LTAT has a controlling stake in Pharmaniaga via its umbrella holding company Boustead.

On the issue of Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali, who did not comply with the 14-day quarantine rule after returning from abroad, Ismail Sabri said anyone found flouting the law would be punished.

“All cases will be investigated. No one is above the law, including ministers.

“The government will not compromise with anyone who flout standard operating procedure (SOP),” he said.

He said an investigation would be carried out and that it was up to the Health authorities whether to issue a compound or take any other action.

On the Slim by-election, Ismail Sabri said the people had been adhering to the SOP during the campaigning period.

“All candidates and the election machinery have been following the rules.

“I noticed everything was in order and safety measures taken seriously. Even children are wearing face masks during home visits.”

Ismail Sabri said people were aware of the need to adhere to the SOP following the Sivagangga cluster in Kedah recently.

The cluster emerged when the owner of a restaurant in Napoh, Kubang Pasu, returned from India but did not follow the mandatory home quarantine rule.

He was subsequently charged and sentenced to five months’ jail and fined RM12,000 by the court.

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