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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — Gerakan Wanita vice chairwoman Azmar Md Alias came to the defence of her party colleague Baljit Singh today, who has been accused of sexism over his remarks on women candidates.
Azmar said Baljit had discussed with her before his speech at the party’s annual general assembly yesterday that he would be referring to her, as he had wanted to talk about the need for the predominantly Chinese party to have more multiracial candidates, as well as more women and youth candidates.
“Since I had no intention of being a candidate and to avoid him to be seem to be lobbying for anyone in particular, I agreed that he will put it candidly,” Azmar said in a statement.
“However now Sdr Baljit, whom I see as my brother and comrade, is now been labelled as a sexist. This is very unfair and made worse when only part of his sentence was reported and the other half referring to me deleted for reasons only known to the reporter.
“I hope this clarifies the situation and the main intention of the speech to have more multiracial, young and women representation in the next GE would not be overlooked,” she added.
Baljit, who is the Gerakan legal and human rights bureau chief, claimed yesterday that his suggestion on fielding young, sexy women in elections was misquoted by the press, saying that he was actually referring to senior party member Azmar.
News portal Malaysiakini had reported Baljit as saying at the Gerakan assembly: “Why not field a woman who is beautiful, sweet, energetic, sexy, and is willing to give it her all”.
However, the contentious quote in the news report was later edited to read: “Why not field a woman who is beautiful, sweet, energetic, sexy, and is willing to give it her all, like our Kak Azmar”.
Gerakan president Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong also came to Baljit’s defence today, insisting that the latter’s remarks were twisted.