Almost a week after he threatened to punch an opposition lawmaker in the Pahang legislative assembly, Pahang Menteri Besar Adnan Yaakob has apologised, reported Sin Chew Daily today.
Directing his apology at Mentakab assemblyperson Tengku Zulpuri Shah Raja Puji, Tanah Rata assemblyperson Leong Ngah Ngah and state speaker Ishak Muhammad, Adnan admitted in his winding-up speech today that he had been rude.
He added that as a Muslim and a law-abiding citizen, he should apologise for his previous behaviour.
According to the report, Adnan also explained that his challenge to Tengku Zulpuri (photo) to “leave the chambers” was not necessarily an invitation to a physical fight outside the hall, suggesting that they could have had a discussion over tea and then hugged each other.
He added that since news broke about his outburst, many people had expressed their concern for him via text message, and this reminded him that people were observing his speech and behaviour.
Last Wednesday, Adnan had questioned if Tengku Zulpuri was a Muslim, and threatened to punch him, after the latter had challenged Adnan’s statement that the Penang floods earlier this month had been an act of God in retaliation to beer festivals that were allowed to happen in the state.
At one point, an irate Adnan had said “Tuan yang di-pertua. Keluar dewan saja (Mr speaker. Let’s leave the chambers),” alluding that he and Tengku Zulpuri should take matters outside.
After Ishak adjourned the assembly, Adnan had continued to challenge the Mentakab assemblyperson to a fight.
The next day, Adnan was reported to have directed harsh words at Leong, also during the legislative assembly.
In response to Adnan’s apology today, Tengku Zulpuri stood up from his seat and said he had forgiven him, adding that he had not taken the remarks to heart as he knew Adnan was a straightforward person.
When contacted later, Tengku Zulpuri said that the state assembly was a “noble” place where debates should be conducted using polite words.
“Do not use kampung, pasar (colloquial, uncouth) words, those are not nice.
“We are state assemblypersons. Our duty is to get the best for the rakyat,” he told Malaysiakini.
When met outside the assembly hall, Leong said that he, too, accepted Adnan’s apology.