Sex scandal: Mahathir in war of words with Najib, Latest World News - The New Paper

Sex scandal: Mahathir in war of words with Najib

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The action taken against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in 1998 and Datuk Seri Azmin Ali in 2019 over sex allegations are not contradictory.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad alluded to this in a post on his blog titled Contradictions, reported Bernama.

"The action taken in 1998 was not based on the video clip. That came later.

"The court had already made its decision.

"The subsequent videos did not influence the court or anyone else.

"It did not influence me," Dr Mahathir said, referring to videos implicating Mr Anwar.

Former prime minister Najib Razak had earlier said that a sex allegation surrounding a member of Dr Mahathir's current Cabinet team has been handled differently compared with the scandal in 1998.

Najib, who is facing a corruption trial, took to Twitter on July 24 to allude to contrasting treatments in the two scandals, reported The Straits Times.

In the tweet, he said: "In 1998. This was a moral issue, not political issue.

"In 2019. This is a political issue, not moral issue."

Although he did not name anyone, most observers believed Najib was referring to Economic Affairs Minister Azmin and then Deputy Prime Minister Anwar, who was sacked from government in 1998 before being jailed subsequently for sodomy and corrupt practices.

In the current scandal, PKR youth leader Haziq Aziz claimed he was one of the men in a sex video that had gone viral.

He claimed Mr Azmin was the other.

On July 20, Malaysia's Inspector-General of Police said the identities of the two men in the clips could not be fully ascertained.

In an earlier post on his personal blog on July 23, Dr Mahathir had repeated his claim that the video clips in the recent scandal were circulated "clearly for political purposes, specifically to block the success of a particular individual", The Straits Times reported.