PETALING JAYA: Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu has promised to return his paycheck as the special advisor of the former prime minister to the Covid-19 fund.
Ahmad Faizal, who was appointed by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on Aug 5 as his special advisor, said that he will give back the entire RM27,000 he received.
"I want to return the entire RM27,000 to the Covid-19 fund,” he said.
He was quoted by Mingguan Malaysia saying that he was not discouraged and angry with those who questioned his income that was raised in Parliament recently, saying this is to ensure transparency of government servants’ salaries.
However, the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia deputy president added he was a little upset at the time because he was not given the chance to explain the truth which was his intention to donate the salary to the Covid-19 disaster fund.
He explained that at the time, he sent a letter to the Chief Secretary to the Government, Tan Sri Mohd Zuki Ali, to channel half of his salary to the Covid-19 fund, on the same day (Aug 16) the government led by Muhyiddin collapsed.
“I agree with them, because I have not provided much service yet, but received a salary of RM27,000 plus a pro rate, maybe more. I intended to return the entire paycheck to the Covid-19 fund," said Ahmad Faizal.
“I apologise and I forgive those who might have talked bad about me. They are not wrong, and I agree with those who raised the matter," he added.
Ahmad Faizal held the special advisor's post for 11 days in the previous government.
The matter was raised in a parliamentary sitting by Opposition MP Lim Lip Eng who asked Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to state the amount of salary received by Ahmad Faizal.
In light of the matter, Ahmad Faizal apologised and hoped it could set a precedent for parties to work together in efforts to build the country.
He also dismissed the mischievous comments he received from social media users when he was enjoying curry noodles in his Putrajaya office.
"I did not do anything wrong. But I think I will be worried if they talk about my work performance instead. But if one talks about my behaviour, my weaknesses about things that would not harm the country, I do not mind. I am an ‘orang kampung’,” Ahmad Faizal said.