KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 13 — PAS leader Nik Mohamad Abduh Nik Abdul Aziz has admitted today that party president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang was the one who gave his “blessings” for him to deny a controversial audio recording.
Nik Abduh said he had initially wanted to admit the veracity of the recording in which he was said to have confessed that the Islamist party had received millions of ringgit from rival Umno, but realised that it would be used by detractors to destroy PAS.
“Facing difficulties, I asked the PAS president for an answer. The president quickly blessed my decision to deny it. I obeyed and was glad to receive my mandate,” he explained in a lengthy post on Facebook.
According to him, several PAS leaders had urged him to deny the matter considering the 14th general election was near and Pakatan Harapan (PH) would use the issue to allegedly slander PAS.
He also said that he was informed beforehand that a recording of his speech would be leaked, and he was faced with deciding whether to admit or deny that such a thing had happened behind closed doors.
“Both decisions were Shariah-compliant,” he insisted.
“But I was aware that it was not only affecting my good name. I was representing PAS in society,” he added.
Yesterday, Nik Abduh finally admitted that he was the person in an audio recording critics claim was proof that the party received money from Umno.
PAS secretary-general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan was quoted as saying that Nik Abduh had confessed to saying the things in the recording, but claimed the conversation about the money in the audio was taken out of context.
The man in the audio recording had purportedly discussed receiving RM2 million from Umno, which Sarawak Report (SR) editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown produced as evidence to back her allegation that PAS took RM90 million from then Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Nik Abduh in April last year denied he was the person in the recording, and claimed the audio was fabricated to tarnish his image.
The issue resurfaced again after PAS unexpectedly announced that Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang had settled his defamation suit against SR and Rewcastle-Brown out of court, with no order to costs, and with both bound to confidentiality.