Taib to return after recuperating abroad, Premier addresses fake social media uproar

Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg. Photo credit: Jabatan Penerangan Malaysia Sarawak.

By Chris Lidom and Karen Bong

KUCHING, Aug 3: Governor of Sarawak Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud is presently still recuperating overseas with plans to return home to Sarawak, said Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

Abang Johari explained that the Head of State had fallen ill during his overseas travels.

“However, he has recovered, although he is still in the process of recuperation (abroad).

“With the final (medical) report from the hospital, he will come back,” he told reporters today in response to inquiries concerning a monochromatic graphic bearing the inscription “Al-Fatihah” related to Taib, which is circulating on various social media platforms.

Addressing the falsified graphic that prominently featured the Astro Awani logo and was vehemently disowned by the Malaysian news agency the previous evening, Abang Johari succinctly attributed it to the lack of awareness among the public.

“But this is the actual story (situation of the Head of State),” he added.

Abang Johari was met after launching the National Month celebration and flying of Jalur Gemilang for Sarawak organised by the Information Department held at the Sarawak police headquarters in Jalan Badruddin here today.

Meanwhile, Astro Awani has issued an emphatic repudiation of a black and white graphic content incorporating the name of Sarawak Governor Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud, which went viral across various social media platforms and WhatsApp late yesterday.

The graphic material in question, displaying the Astro Awani logo and accompanied by the phrase “Al-Fatihah” has been definitively ascertained as fake.

In a statement issued by its headquarters, the Malaysian news organisation also extends its apologies to the esteemed family of the Governor of Sarawak for this unfortunate incident.

Astro Awani further implores the general public to be aware of the forged material and abstain from engaging in its dissemination.

Two days ago (Aug 1), Deputy Minister for Law, MA63 and State-Federal Relations Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali disclosed that Taib was taken ill while travelling overseas and he is currently recuperating.

She emphasised that the existing circumstances do not necessitate the appointment of an acting Head of State.

Despite Taib’s physical absence from Sarawak, he maintains active communication with the Sarawak government and continues to discharge his official and constitutional obligations.

In addition, Sharifah Hasidah gave assurance that the health status of Taib is regularly conveyed to the Sarawak government. — DayakDaily