Hadi: It was Mahathir’s dissatisfactory answer that sparked riot

TTF: TTF has undertaken to correct perception by editing a news report (edited section in blue) by The Malay Mail Online that seems suspiciously slanted in favour of Dr Mahathir Mohamad. TTF offers no apology for its action and deems it necessary in the spirit of fair reporting and responsible journalism

KUALA LUMPUR: Discussions of the deadly 1985 police raid on a Muslim sect in Memali, Kedah were worthless if those responsible do not apologise or compensate the victims, PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang said today.

Hadi claimed the main cause of the violence at the recent Nothing to Hide 2.0 forum featuring former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was the dissatisfactory answer the latter gave to the Memali incident that had resulted in the deaths of PAS leader Ibrahim Mahmud, 13 villagers and four police officers in the remote village near Baling.

“At that time, Ustaz Ibrahim Mahmud and his associates were blamed, instead of those who always insulted Islam and its precepts that had greatly angered Ustaz Ibrahim and his associates,” Hadi said in a statement.

“Many civil servants, the police and Umno did not agree with the approach that had sacrificed the police who were forced [to take action] and led to attacks against Ustaz Ibrahim and his associates. We hope that those who were forced will also be martyrs; this is a precept under Islam,” added the head of the Islamist Opposition party.

According to reports, then-Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Tun Musa Hitam had ordered a team of around 200 police officers to lay siege on the remote village near Baling that was occupied by around 400 of the sect’s members, led by Muslim preacher Ibrahim who was also known as Ibrahim Libya.

However, Musa has since come out to correct the negative perception cast against him, which he claimed was lopsided as Mahathir had deliberately washed his hands from the massacre by refusing to make public the truth.

In a tell all session on the 28th of March 2014, the former DPM revealed that Mahathir was in fact in the country at the time of the massacre and not overseas as reported by media and as the former premier himself claimed.

According to Musa, Mahathir only left the country four days later, adding that his departure was a ‘tactic’ contrived to protect him.

The Memali siege was originally meant to detain Ibrahim under the Internal Security Act, but led to a clash that killed 18 people.

Hadi thanked those who had asked for an explanation at the Nothing to Hide 2.0 forum about the Memali incident.

“Those who were unable to answer should not be angry and other people should not have caused trouble. The youths should not be solely blamed; those who had caused it should also be blamed,” he said.

Three teenagers were remanded yesterday in an investigation for rioting and possession of weapons at the Nothing to Hide 2.0 forum organised by Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) last Sunday.

The forum in Shah Alam was disrupted by some who set off flares and threw shoes towards the stage when PPBM chairman Dr Mahathir was taking questions from the audience, leading to a mass brawl.

Adapted from: The Malay Mail Online

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