Kit Siang asks if PM’s special envoy to Middle East banned from Saudi Arabia

·2-min read
PAS President Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang speaks during a dialogue session with the media at PAS' headquarters in Kuala Lumpur December 13, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
PAS President Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang speaks during a dialogue session with the media at PAS' headquarters in Kuala Lumpur December 13, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 — The prime minister should clarify if Saudi Arabia has barred his special envoy to the Middle East from visiting, DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said today when urging the government to address claims of leakages amounting to billions of ringgit annually.

After proposing a parliamentary select committee on corruption, abuses and wastage of public funds, the federal lawmaker said the growing number of political appointments in the Prime Minister’s Department deserved scrutiny.

“For instance, is it true that the prime minister’s special envoy to the Middle East has been banned from Saudi Arabia and had never visited Saudi Arabia for the whole term of his appointment?

“If so, what kind of a special envoy to the Middle East is this?” Lim said in a statement today.

Earlier, Lim cited a report from the Rasuah Busters movement that estimated Malaysia to be losing as much as RM60 billion each year to corruption and illicit outflows.

While Lim did not name the person, PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang is Malaysia’s special envoy to the Middle East.

Hadi was appointed to the position last year when Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin had been the prime minister and was reappointed after Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob took over this year.

Questions about Hadi’s status in Saudi Arabia already emerged earlier this year when he was absent from Muhyiddin’s entourage during the then-PM’s official visit to the kingdom and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

While Saudi Arabia has not made any announcement specifically about Hadi, the kingdom along with several other Arab countries previously listed the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) group as a terrorist organisation.

Hadi is a vice-president of the IUMS and an active contributor to the group’s discourse.

Both IUMS and Hadi previously rejected views that the group supported terrorism.

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