PETALING JAYA: Umno's Datuk Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi (pic) has called for Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali to be charged in court with skipping his Covid-19 home quarantine.
The Umno supreme council member also called out the Health Ministry over alleged double standards in the issue involving Khairuddin, who is from PAS.
"He is a minister, highly educated, holds a post in the party and is an Islamist. Why was he willing to go against the rules?
"He was willing to return four months of his ministerial salary. It's not a small amount.
"It's proof that he himself admitted that his mistake was grave and embarrassing," said Puad in a Facebook post on Saturday (Aug 22).
He also alleged there were double standards by the Health Ministry and that the RM1,000 compound issued against Khairuddin was "too low and very unfair".
"Why destroy the Health Ministry brand, one that is already great?" questioned Puad.
He said this could lead to the Perikatan Nasional government being accused of political interference and unreliable.
"That's why the Health Ministry shouldn't cover the issue. Khairuddin should be charged in court," he said.
Puad said he anticipated he would be criticised for speaking out and added he hoped he would not be accused of not defending Muafakat Nasional due to his criticism of Khairuddin.
"Don't destroy the people's confidence and trust," he said.
On Saturday (Aug 22), Khairuddin broke his silence on the issue and apologised to all Malaysians, pledging to donate four months of his ministerial salary to the national Covid-19 fund.
This came after he was fined RM1,000 by the Health Ministry on Aug 7 for breaking home quarantine regulations after returning from Turkey in July.
Recently, a 72-year-old senior citizen was fined RM8,000 and sentenced to a day's jail after violating her home quarantine order in Ipoh, Perak while in Penang, a 42-year-old technician was fined RM2,500 for the same offence.
An online petition to get Khairuddin to quit as minister has so far garnered nearly 30,000 signatories.