KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed said today that the name “Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty” which Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claimed to be the full name of the ex-prime minister was correct.
Nur Jazlan said there were many sources that could be used to verify the name, such as the university registration of Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
“We can check the registration at his university if we want to know the name he used originally,” he told reporters after visiting the TRIS Centre for registering refugees here.
Zahid, who is the home minister and Umno acting deputy president, was widely criticised after claiming on Sunday that the name on Mahathir’s identity card (IC) was “Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty”.
The “a/l” stands for “anak lelaki” which in Malay means “son of”, and is commonly used in the official naming of Malaysians of Indian ethnicity.
Zahid said at the Kelana Jaya Umno division meeting that the Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman was “the man who struggled for the Malay agenda” once but was actually “using the Malays”.
He also said he obtained the IC from the National Registration Department’s director-general Yazid Ramli.
However, Mahathir yesterday explained that Indian Muslims did not include the “anak lelaki” (a/l) (son of) or “anak perempuan” (a/p) (daughter of) in their names which normally comprised only two components since two Indian Muslim names were rarely similar.
He challenged Zahid to produce the IC that purportedly carried the name “Mahathir a/l Iskandar Kutty”.
Nur Jazlan said the police would investigate the reports lodged against Zahid.
“The police will investigate. But what happens if their investigation confirms the name? This issue has been politicised,” he added.
Nur Jazlan also said what Zahid did was not an offence.
“The details on an identity card are a public record. Everyone can know our name.
“It becomes an offence if an IC is used to fraudulently take a loan, but there is nothing wrong in revealing what is on an IC,” he said.
He said Zahid made the revelation because Mahathir was not sincere and honest in his struggle for the Malays.
“We should look at Zahid’s revelation in the proper context of the speech,” he said.