COMMENT | This week has been a very focused week for me. My eldest daughter just entered Standard One, and I’ve mostly cleared my schedule for the week so I can help her get through a landmark period of her life. So my week has mostly been focused on that, instead of work.
Then, on the third day of school, while I was waiting at the canteen right before 6pm when school would end, I received a notification on my phone. Someone had just followed me on Twitter. I looked at my phone and it was Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the deputy prime minister of Malaysia.
At first, I got scared. He is also the home minister, and that meant most of the laws and acts that could be a threat to journalists like me falls under his jurisdiction. So many of my colleagues and friends have been detained and interrogated for the things they had reported and said.
I’ve said some pretty anti-establishment things throughout the years and, frankly, I would rather not be detained. But then I thought back. Many of the things I’ve written or spoken about really haven’t been against the law. And anyway, it’s not like I’m such a high profile individual who gets that much attention.
What it really is, and believe this to be very much an educated assumption on my part, is that the deputy prime minister is just making an attempt to engage with the people. Okay, fine! Let’s not be naive. It’s most probably his social media team that followed me on Twitter, and not him personally...