Local artiste groups have taken aim at a Singaporean comedy show for allegedly mocking Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
They took issue with Channel 5’s ‘Ok Chope’ programme in which a panel of comedians were asked to complete the headline of a news story involving Najib.
The panel, comprising Sam See, Najip Ali, Rishi Budhrani and Mike Kassim offered various tongue-in-cheek answers.
However, Persatuan Seniman Malaysia secretary-general Hafiz Nafiah has threatened to lodge a police report.
“We condemn the disgusting and irresponsible airing of episode 26 of ‘Ok Chope!’ by Mediacorp’s Channel 5, owned by Temasek Holdings, which mocked the Malaysian prime minister.
“A reminder for these shallow-minded actors – Malaysia is a country that practices a parliamentary democracy where the prime minister was chosen by the people of this country.
“It also affects the good diplomatic relations between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore which relationship has lasted for a long time,” he said in a statement today.
Hafiz claimed that the Singaporean artistes mocked Najib as a way for them to let off steam due to the “inflation problems and depressed economic situation in Singapore”.
He demanded that the producers of the programme apologise to the prime minister.
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Meanwhile, Angkatan Karyawan Nasionalis (Akar) deputy president Helme Hanafi, in a statement, said the programme clearly intended to insult Najib on purpose.
He proposed that the Home Ministry impose a travel ban on the Singapore artistes who appeared on the programme.
He also demanded that that Singapore High Commission be summoned over the matter so that they can be prosecuted for insulting the leader of a neighbouring country.
During the programme, its host Vernette Lopez had asked the panel to complete the following headline “Najib slams ___ for threatening Malaysia’s progress”.
It was later revealed that the actual headline was Najib slams “fake news” for threatening Malaysia’s progress.
The report was about Najib criticising his political opponents for misinformation which he claimed nearly scuttled Malaysia’s US$7 billion deal with Saudi Aramco.
After this was revealed, one of the panelist said: “Once again, the Saudis are giving him money, what a surprise”.