NAZRI PRO­POSES APRIL 7 FOR DE­BATE WITH DR M

Event to be held at Karangkraf’s head­quar­ters in Shah Alam

New Straits Times - - News -

ADRIAN LAI

KUALA LUMPUR adri­an­lai@nst.com.my

DATUK Seri Mo­hamed Nazri Ab­dul Aziz pro­posed April 7 for his de­bate with Tun Dr Ma­hathir Mo­hamad, which was ini­tially shelved af­ter po­lice dis­al­lowed the event from be­ing held in Perak this Satur­day.

The tourism and cul­ture min­is­ter said the event or­gan­iser, Kumpu­lan Me­dia Karangkraf, had agreed for the de­bate to be held at 9.30pm at its head­quar­ters in Shah Alam in­stead.

“My only re­quest is for (Parti Amanah Ne­gara’s) Shah Alam mem­ber of par­lia­ment Khalid Sa­mad to be­come the mod­er­a­tor,” Nazri said dur­ing a press con­fer­ence at Par­lia­ment here yes­ter­day.

He said he was made to un­der­stand that Khalid had agreed to carry out the task of mod­er­at­ing the pub­lic de­bate.

“I want a politi­cian to be the mod­er­a­tor, be­cause an aca­demi­cian may be too aca­demic,” he said, adding that he believed Khalid would act neu­trally de­spite his af­fil­i­a­tion with the op­po­si­tion.

He said Karangkraf would no­tify the po­lice of the venue change, adding that a po­lice per­mit was no longer needed as it would be held on pri­vate prop­erty and not at a pub­lic venue.

Nazri said Dr Ma­hathir would be no­ti­fied of the lat­est de­vel­op­ments.

“I hope there won’t be any more ob­struc­tions by the po­lice,” he said, adding that those who at­tended the de­bate would be en­cour­aged to do­nate to a fund to aid the Ro­hingya in Myan­mar.

This came af­ter Perak act­ing po­lice chief Datuk Has­nan Has­san said the po­lice had re­jected an ap­pli­ca­tion by Karangkraf to hold the de­bate at Sul­tan Azlan Shah Mara Ju­nior Science Col­lege.

Has­nan listed four rea­sons for the re­jec­tion, in­clud­ing the event or­gan­iser’s fail­ure to sub­mit a no­ti­fi­ca­tion form 10 days be­fore the event, which was re­quired un­der Sec­tion 9 (1) of the Peace­ful As­sem­bly Act 2012.

He said the venue cho­sen for the de­bate was a school, which was pro­hib­ited un­der the act.

Dr Ma­hathir, in re­sponse, had asked Nazri to se­lect a new time and venue for the de­bate, adding that the lat­ter had un­til this evening to en­sure the event would go on.

The de­bate has made head­lines as it would touch on is­sues, such as the Bu­mipu­tra Malaysia Fi­nance scan­dal, which has been linked to Dr Ma­hathir’s ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Dr Ma­hathir, on March 10, had chal­lenged Nazri to a de­bate af­ter the lat­ter chal­lenged the for­mer prime min­is­ter to con­test against him for the Padang Ren­gas par­lia­men­tary seat.

The 91-year-old had said he had no plans to con­test in the next gen­eral elec­tion and sug­gested a de­bate in­stead.

The Home Min­istry has given the green light for the de­bate to be held, but the gov­ern­ment had re­cently an­nounced there would not be a live tele­cast of the event

on RTM.

PIC BY MUHD ZAABA ZAKERIA

Tourism and Cul­ture Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Mo­hamed Nazri Ab­dul Aziz (se­cond from right) at Par­lia­ment in Kuala Lumpur yes­ter­day.

Tun Dr Ma­hathir Mo­hamad

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