Dewan Rakyat speaker: My son is not official staff member

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Dewan Rakyat speaker Johari Abdul has clarified that his son Muhammad Iqbal Johari is not an official member of his staff.

“He is not working under the speaker’s office. As of today, there was no appointment, nothing yet,” he told Malaysiakini when contacted today.

Asked why Iqbal was listed as “Special Functions Officer 1” to the Dewan Rakyat speaker on the Parliament website, Johari claimed the information on the portal was incorrect.

According to the staff directory on the Parliament website, Iqbal also has an official email address and telephone extension number.

Johari said Iqbal has been his assistant over the past 14 years and was being paid out of his own pocket.

“The government is not paying him… He is helping me as former MP. I have unfinished business and he is helping me,” he said.

Jabatan Penerangan Malaysia

He stressed that Iqbal is merely continuing his duties and no appointment had been made, unlike allegations raised by internet users.

This comes after claims that one ‘Muhammad Iqbal Johari’ was appointed as special duties officer 1 to the Yang di-Pertua Dewan Rakyat.

The allegation has gone viral and raised issues pertaining to nepotism claims under the current Anwar Ibrahim-led administration.

Bersatu member Badrul Hisham Shaharin was among those who raised the allegation on social media.

He also claimed the full name of Johari’s son Mohammed Iqbal was amended on the Parliament’s online directory to mask his links to the speaker.

“Initially, there was one Mohammed Iqbal bin Johari listed as a special duties officer in the @MYParlimen staff directory.

“But after it was revealed that Nurul Izzah had been appointed as Anwar’s adviser, the directory had been edited, where ‘bin Johari’ was removed (from Iqbal’s name).

“Everyone else had their surname stated, except this one. Why?” he tweeted.

Badrul Hisham also tagged Johari’s tweet handle, seeking the speaker’s explanation on the matter.

“Is there any explanation for this? Is he your own son?” he asked.

He also attached screenshots showing discrepancies between the Parliament directory and a page from a Google search.

A Google search by Malaysiakini also showed one “Mohammed Iqbal bin Johari” listed in the directory but when the link was clicked and the page was redirected to Parliament’s staff directory, only “Mohammed Iqbal” was found. – Malaysiakini