Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim stopped his ceramah in Kapit in the interior of central Sarawak after a longhouse chief asked him about a sex video and his Omega watch, witnesses said today.
Anwar, who had spoken for 20 minutes, left abruptly after longhouse chief Edison Bugap in Melekun asked him to explain his sodomy case, the video and the watch, according to a resident.
Anwar told the 120-strong crowd that they should be more worried about logging and seizure of their native customary rights land, the resident said, according to Bernama .
The issue of the sex video allegedly featuring a man resembling Anwar has dogged his campaign trail in the Sarawak election.
On Sunday, Anwar ticked off a TV journalist who asked him about the watch.
Anwar has denied that the Omega allegedly found in a hotel room after a sex act caught on tape belonged to him.
Later, during a press conference in Kuching, Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said, “I understand that at a certain longhouse he (Anwar) had to endure a barrage of questions which he probably felt uncomfortable answering, so he left the event, maybe because he was trapped with questions like these.
“This shows the people at the longhouse, too, know who is the real Anwar. By right if he is truly the people’s leader then he should give an explanation. Whatever the rakyat wants to ask him, he should answer, but why he feel it was so hard to answer that he had to leave the event?”
It's not so, says eyewitness
Meanwhile, an eyewitness to the incident when contacted by Malaysiakini , denied what was reported by the national news agency.
The person, who declined to be named, said he did not consider such a matter as “much of an incident” in the Baleh constituency in Kapit.
“What happened was Anwar was delivering his speech when a tuai rumah (longhouse headman) from the longhouse asked him about the Omega watch, the sex tape and his on-going sodomy trial. Anwar provided a decent answer in replying to the question, which was accepted by the audience. Anwar took some time in explaining and he did not run off as reported,” he said.
“I saw an SMS alert and it is truly a fabrication by the BN party machinery to humiliate Anwar. What happened was after Anwar answered the question, he continued to deliver his ceramah. It was the person who had left the longhouse and not Anwar,” he said.
The person also disputed that the actual number in the longhouse audience was 120 as reported as there were 500 to 700 people during the 11am incident, where the audience was receptive and came out in numbers.
He said the Baleh seat sees a two-way contest between BN’s James Masing and PKR’s Frankie Bedindang.