Zahid denies it’s him in audio recording

PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi wants the authorities to launch an investigation into an audio recording of a phone conversation which is claimed to be between him and PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

“I am disappointed and shocked by the viral audio clip which is alleged to be a recorded conversation between me and Anwar.

“I strongly deny that there was such a conversation between the two of us after the recent Umno general assembly, ” he said in a statement yesterday.

Ahmad Zahid said he ordered his officer to lodge a police report so that investigations could be conducted to find out who was behind it.

He described the act as a “vile and malicious political move to weaken and destroy Umno”.

The former deputy prime minister said that as Umno president, he would never turn his back on the decision made by the party’s supreme council and general assembly last month.

His statement came after the emergence of the audio clip that has been widely shared on social media which had two voices similar to his and Anwar’s.

The recording was purportedly of a phone conversation between the two leaders who touched on the need to hold an extraordinary Umno supreme council meeting to give the president the mandate to enable him to make the decision to leave the Perikatan Nasional government.

Umno’s resolution at its general assembly was that the party would only break ranks with Perikatan after the dissolution of Parliament.

The audio clip, which is about five minutes long, has a voice similar to Ahmad Zahid’s thanking the other person for being his “teacher”.

The voice sounding like Anwar then said he was impressed with the former’s performance at the Umno general assembly.

The voice can also be heard saying that Ahmad Zahid must get one of the Umno ministers to resign from the Perikatan government.

Both, however, then agreed that no Umno ministers would resign.

The voice that sounds like Anwar’s then suggested that Energy and Natural Resources Minister Datuk Dr Shamsul Anuar Nasarah looked most likely to be the first to do so.

At the beginning of the recording, the voice which sounds like Anwar said that this was the first time he was following the Umno general assembly after 20 years, having been sacked from the party in 1998.

The voice similar to Ahmad Zahid’s then pacified the other, saying that his speech of “No Anwar, No DAP” was only tactical.

“Anwar” then praised his speech at the AGM.

“I heard your speech, not bad, not bad! Good! Good! I am very impressed. I am very proud of you. Your winding up was very confident – good!

“The mood is clear, everyone solidly wants to leave Perikatan, right?” he said.

The other replied: “When the supreme council gives the mandate to the president, this is easier than getting a resolution.”

With much laughter, the voice that sounds like Ahmad Zahid thanked the other for guiding him well during the Umno general assembly.

“You know who is my teacher, right? My teacher who taught me is the one I am talking to right now, ” said the voice.

At the Umno general assembly on March 28, Ahmad Zahid said Umno was standing firm in rejecting any tie-up with Perikatan in the next general election.

He added that the party’s supreme council and grassroots agreed that it should not work with Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, which is led by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

Last October, a purported letter of support signed by Ahmad Zahid and sent to Istana Negara supporting Anwar as the next prime minister was circulated.

Ahmad Zahid never denied the letter, but he has stuck to the “No DAP, No Anwar” stand during Umno supreme council meetings.

In recent days, some Umno and Barisan Nasional leaders had challenged Ahmad Zahid to deny that he was working with Anwar.

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