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Thomas speaks Malay, video evidence captures attention

Published:  |  Modified:

From the moment he was appointed as attorney-general last month, Tommy Thomas has faced a barrage of criticism over his alleged lack of fluency in speaking Malay.

When former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak was charged in court last week, his supporters disrupted a press conference by Thomas by shouting "Melayu, Melayu" at him repeatedly.

They later said that Thomas as the attorney-general should speak in Malay.

However, there doesn't appear to be any record of him speaking in Malay in public, until now.

Facebook user Shamsul Sulaiman posted a video of Thomas reading out a Malay speech at the Judicial and Legal Service Officers Association (Jalsoa) at the Attorney-General's Chambers in Putrajaya today.

The video has been shared 130 times as of 4.40pm, and many commenters were supportive of Thomas' effort to speak in Malay.

Thomas had said that he would work to improve his mastery of the national language, which fell into disuse during his time as a corporate lawyer. 

"The trouble with private practice, which I have been in for 42 years, (involved) dealing with commercial clients and commercial documents.

"I guess I have neglected my Bahasa, so I need to brush it up. I promise to brush it up," he said.

Thomas was a barrister, constitutional law expert and civil litigator.

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