PETALING JAYA: Pakatan Harapan secretary-general Saifuddin Nasution Ismail has defended Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s order for the police to act against those who have made false claims against him.
In a statement, Saifuddin said Anwar had to act as there is currently no Cabinet or home minister.
He also said Anwar wanted to safeguard “national interests and security” in light of the various allegedly inflammatory statements made by PAS leaders.
Saifuddin’s statement was a response to Lawyers for Liberty director Zaid Malek stating yesterday that it was wrong for the prime minister to order the police to act against those who made false claims against him.
Instead, Zaid said Anwar should file a defamation suit in a civil court if he felt aggrieved by the claims.
On Monday, PKR information chief Fahmi Fadzil revealed that Anwar had directed the police to act against anyone spreading slanderous statements against him, such as claims that he was an Israeli agent.
The next day, the police said it was investigating Baling MP Hassan Saad over the allegation.
Saifuddin added that it was the police’s decision to investigate Hassan based on reports lodged against the PAS man.
He stressed that neither a prime minister nor a minister had the power to order the police to investigate anyone, adding that only the inspector-general of police could do so.
“Therefore, it is not right to assume that the prime minister ordered the investigation,” said Saifuddin.
“Zaid should have been more diligent in seeking confirmation from the police before making such unwarranted allegations against the prime minister.”
On Tuesday, Anwar gave Hassan three days to clarify claims in an audio recording that the Perikatan Nasional MP had made allegations of “Israeli influence” in Anwar’s appointment as prime minister.
In the audio recording, a woman claimed that Hassan told her that PAS had secured enough votes to form the government, but Anwar had “contacted Israel and foreign powers” to interfere in his appointment.
In a letter of demand issued by law firm SN Nair & Partners to Hassan, Anwar said Hassan had three days to provide a general and written confirmation that he was not involved in the matter.
Anwar has also demanded that the audio recording, which has gone viral, be retracted as he claimed it had defamed him.
According to the New Straits Times, Hassan has denied any involvement with the recording.
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