CC-NEWS KJ tells Akmal to stand down over socks issue

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Khairy Jamaluddin has called for Umno Youth chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh to stand down over the socks issue involving the KK Mart convenience store.

The former Umno Youth chief in his podcast, Keluar Sekejap, said the legal processes had already commenced and that it is time to take a step back and reflect.

“Akmal, you made your point, but actions have been taken by the police and it’s time to stand down, your point has been made.

“We need to learn from this issue, we need to take a step back, have we gone too far?” Khairy said.

“Yes, we understand that as the Umno Youth chief, you are supposed to be the ‘Hero Malaya’ but the authorities have taken their actions.”

He said that it was time to leave it to Muslim consumers to decide whether a boycott was needed or not.

Khairy also acknowledged that such an issue was serious and sensitive and that excessive reaction toward the incident would only affect the good relations among Malaysians.

He added that Akmal must understand that standing down does not mean surrendering.

The uproar against KK Mart reached a new level yesterday when a petrol bomb was thrown at an outlet in Bidor, Perak yesterday morning.

Khairy acknowledged today that Akmal had not ordered his supporters to burn down KK Mart but said such an act was unacceptable.

Meanwhile, he also expressed concern that if the outrage against KK Mart continues, it will feed into negative racial narratives.

“It would feed into the Malay narrative that the Chinese are tone-deaf towards Malays.

“And it would feed into the Chinese narrative, that when such issues crop up, Chinese businesses would be oppressed,” he said.

Commenting on the matter further, Khairy also questioned why Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim had remained relatively silent on the matter.

He said as a skilled orator, Anwar should seize the opportunity to address all Malaysians from the heart and unite them in this divisive moment.

“This is a leadership moment, where he can show to all ‘I am a leader who understands how complex it is to lead a diverse country like Malaysia. Who knows this is sensitive, but this is how we should react as Muslims and as multi-racial Malaysians’. That is what I hope from Anwar,” Khairy said.

Anwar had thus far reportedly only commented on the KK Mart controversy twice.

The first time, he said a probe must be carried out over the matter but that punishment should not be excessive.

He also said there was no need to drag the issue out longer.

Yesterday, Anwar also reiterated that religions should not be insulted, especially Islam.

Meanwhile, Khairy’s co-host, former Umno information chief Shahril Hamdan Suffian, also questioned why religious figures were not speaking out.

“I want to hear from religious figures, tell me, what is the right response,” he said.

Shahril had earlier cited how US-based Muslim preacher Omar Suleiman had once taught that when Islam is perceived to be attacked, Muslims must remain calm and dignified in their response.