GEORGE TOWN: Satirical cartoonist Zunar has been released on police bail, following his 10-hour remand at the Northeast district police station earlier.
Zunar’s lawyer R S N Rayer said his client was released at about 6.45pm today.
When contacted, Northeast district police chief ACP Mior Faridalathrash Wahid confirmed the cartoonist was released on police bail.
Relaying a message through Rayer, Zunar said: “Thanks to the team of lawyers— Ramkarpal Singh, Cheah Kah Peng, Mathan Ananadaram, and Lee Khai.”
Zunar also tweeted: “Bebas!” (free!), along with a picture of himself with his lawyers and Batu Kawan MP Kasthuriraani Patto.
Zunar, whose real name is Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque, was earlier remanded for a day at the George Town Magistrate’s Court, following an incident that took place at Komtar, the venue of an exhibition of 20 of his cartoons.
In the Friday incident, Zunar claimed he was confronted by some 30 Penang Umno Youth members and others from Malay NGOs, who demanded the cartoons on display be taken down as it depicted the prime minister and other national leaders in a bad light.
Due to the altercation, the cartoonist was forced to cancel the exhibition for security reasons. The exhibition was supposed to run until today.
Nibong Tebal Umno Youth Chief Mohd Norhiesam Ismail later lodged a police report, alleging that Zunar’s drawings had disturbed the peace of Malaysians at large.
Norhiesam said it was unacceptable for Zunar to depict national leaders like Prime Minister Najib Razak in such a negative manner.