Pemandu exec openly attacks opposition, but insists unit impartial
KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 — A director of the government’s efficiency unit Pemandu has publicly slammed Pakatan Rakyat (PR) for only sniping and criticising, amid concerns in recent days over the impartiality of civil servants and government officials.
Alex Iskandar Liew, who is communications director for the Government Transformation Programme (GTP), on Monday said on micro-blogging site Twitter: “it’s always easier 2 snipe & criticise wot’s being done & delivered BUT seriously wtf hv u done to improve the states u hv governed PR?”
“All oppos do is snipe & critic wot is being done but not focused on improving their states! Wot hv they done??” he added on his public account this morning, in a tweet copied to @barisannasional and @NRC11, a fan club dedicated to Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
When contacted by The Malaysian Insider today, Liew insisted Pemandu, a unit under the Prime Minister’s Department, was impartial and that the tweets were his personal view.
“I was griping about the lack of lights on bike lanes in Selangor. It’s my right to air my personal opinion as a Selangor citizen,” he said, adding that the situation has caused bicyclists to lose their lives.
“Why do you have to dig around my Twitter space to look for a story? You should ask Datuk Seri Idris Jala if Pemandu is impartial, not me. Are you impartial?” he replied, referring to the Pemandu chief executive when asked if the unit was impartial.
In a separate tweet, he also said that “Today @zaidshaari & I met 2 Penangites who’re Nat Geo producers. They say the current Penang govt is not all they make themselves out to be!”
Liew’s tweets were public and can be viewed by anyone.
He added that his tweets were not an attack on the opposition but his personal views “based on what I read in your esteemed publication.”
“What happened to freedom of speech and expression? This is my personal account,” he said, and tweeted after speaking to The Malaysian Insider that “apparently I now can’t gripe on my personal twitter space about anything related to the opposition!”
The newly-appointed Chief Secretary to the Government had told his charges on Sunday to be loyal to the government and not be fooled by the opposition’s “empty promises,” sparking public criticism of his partiality.
“They should know better. Don’t be taken in by empty promises. As civil servants we must be loyal to the King and serve the government of the day,” Datuk Seri Dr Ali Hamsa said of the 1.4-million strong civil service in an interview published by the New Straits Times.
Foreign Ministry undersecretary Ahmad Rozian Abdul Ghani then attacked a Canadian newspaper yesterday for describing Najib as a “false democrat,” insisting the prime minister had “an impressive track record by anyone’s standards.”
“While the prime minister takes nothing for granted, he hopes he will be given a mandate to continue Malaysia’s transformation,” the diplomat added.