Khairy Jamaluddin has criticised Dr Mahathir Mohamad for “fat shaming” a woman during his recent speech in Kedah.
“Bet he gets a free pass for fat shaming a woman. Free pass. All day, everyday,” said the youth and sports minister on Twitter.
The tweet included a link to a video which contained an excerpt of Mahathir’s speech in Kubang Pasu on May 16.
In the video, Mahathir, who is also Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) chairperson, said that he is slim because he does not “makan rasuah” (take bribes).
“I do not want to become fat like some people… like someone’s wife. When she walks, it’s like a gearbox,” he said, waving his arms up and down to mimick how the person walked.
Though he did not mention names, it appeared that he was referring to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s wife Rosmah Mansor.
In an obvious referrence to Najib, Mahathir said he wanted “this person” to quit, but this person has refused to do so.
“If he does not want to quit, what do we do? We ensure he loses in the next election,” he added.
Bersatu Youth chief Syed Saddiq Syed Rahman later responded to Khairy’s tweet, agreeing that Mahathir should not have made such remarks.
However, he questioned why Khairy did not speak up when Umno politicians made disparaging remarks against women.
“Mahathir should not have said that, even as a joke.
“May I ask, where were you (Khairy) when your colleagues (Federal Territories Minister) Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor and MP rape shamed women as a whole,” he tweeted.
Tengku Adnan had said on May 17 that women who wish to avoid being harassed in public should dress in a shabby manner.
He had said this during a Transformasi Nasional 2050 (TN50) dialogue in Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, in response to a woman who expressed concern about public safety.
“It’s because you’re so beautiful. The next time you go out, wear more comot (shabby) clothes,” he had quipped, after the woman expressed concern about robberies, kidnapping and being disturbed in public.
In early April, Tasek Gelugor MP Shabudin Yahaya had also caused an uproar when he said in Parliament that a rapist marrying his victim could be a remedy for social ills.
The MP pointed out that there was no law preventing those who had been raped from marrying their rapists.
He had also said that girls under 16 could marry under Islamic law, as long as they were granted leave by the syariah court.