Fadhlina: PM’s comment to student misunderstood, not sexist

EDUCATION Minister Fadhlina Sidek has dismissed allegations that the controversial comment made by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to a female Form Six student during a public forum was sexist.

Speaking to reporters following the inauguration ceremony for the construction of SJK(C) Regent Elmina in Shah Alam earlier today (June 26) Fadhlina said the comment was misunderstood, and provided the context.

The Nibong Tebal MP was responding to a query about Anwar’s statement during an event at a Negri Sembilan university where the student had asked the Prime Minister about the government’s plans to tackle the ringgit’s falling value.

The student had also asked him whether Malaysia could become a first-class nation and what the government and the younger generation could do to realise that aim.

Anwar responded by praising the student on how well she relayed her questions, and then said that if he were younger, he would have asked the student for her phone number.

Anwar then made it clear to the audience that he was just being playful and that his wife was watching the proceedings.

His behaviour had, however, earned the wrath of Bersatu’s legal bureau and Muda leadership, who called the comments sexist and unacceptable.

Bersatu’s Legal and Constitution bureau deputy chairman Sasha Lyna Abdul Latif said Anwar had made a mockery of his own slogan which promised Malaysia a “Madani” (civilised) discourse.

Sasha, in demanding that Anwar issue a public apology, said the Tambun MP’s comment was a “stunning display of discriminatory and sexist language”.

Meanwhile, Muda deputy president Amira Aisya Abdul Aziz also called for an apology from Anwar, saying the Prime Minister should set a good example for other men.

“Make them understand that this behaviour is not okay. Especially coming from someone with a position of power,” she remarked.

“If you’re impressed by the girl, just compliment her without making comments that objectify her.” – June 26, 2023


Main pic credit: Bernama

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