Deputy primary industries minister suspends aide amid sex scandal

Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin speaks to the media at the Primary Industries and Commodities Ministry in Putrajaya June 13, 2019. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin speaks to the media at the Primary Industries and Commodities Ministry in Putrajaya June 13, 2019. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

PUTRAJAYA, June 13 — The aide to a deputy minister implicated in a sex video that purportedly featured a minister has been suspended with immediate effect.

Deputy Primary Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin said the aide, Muhammad Haziq Abdullah Abdul Aziz, was handed a show-cause letter today.

He added that Haziq, whose employment is on a contract basis, is required to respond within three days.

“The ministry will not hesitate to terminate his contract should he fail to explain within the given time,” Shamsul told a press conference here.

Despite the suspension, Shamsul said his ministry cannot verify if Haziq was the person who confessed to being one of the two men in the leaked sex video.

The deputy minister said he hoped the aide would respond to the show-cause letter and offer an explanation.

“That is why we need him to verify,” Shamsul said.

The controversy took a confusing turn after Santubong PKR leader Ahmad Nazib Johari and his division Youth wing chief Mohd Haziq said the person who claimed to be Haziq was an impostor.

They alleged that the real Haziq’s account may have been hacked as part of an elaborate ploy to attack Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, who is said to be the other person in the sex clip.

Azmin has categorically denied that it is him in the video and accused those behind it of character assassination. He claimed the culprits want to end his political career.

His aides have filed several reports with the authorities, including a Qazaf complaint with the Federal Territories Islamic Religious Department (Jawi), calling for it to investigate the person who made the confession.

Shamsul said both he and ministry staff were “shocked” by the incident.

“His employment with the ministry was based on the evaluation of his professional interview, academic qualifications as well as his work experience which was suitable to the scope of job offered,” the deputy minister said.

“Therefore, his action was shocking and obviously, uncalled for.”