Minister in the Prime Minister's Department P Waythamoorthy has demanded an apology from senior lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah for casting estate workers in a negative light.
“I am perplexed as to what the learned senior lawyer was insinuating when he stated that the media should not act like 'estate people'.
“Is he claiming that 'estate people' lack proper manners, ethics, morals, and civility? Or that they are liars?” he asked in a statement this evening.
Waythamoorthy said it is both degrading and disparaging to refer to those from estates in such a crude manner.
“They have selflessly sacrificed their blood, sweat, and tears in contributing towards nation building.
“The learned counsel's remarks unfairly paints a negative perception and stigmatizes this honorable and dignified community.
“I strongly urge the learned counsel to apologize to the community,” he added.
Shafee, who is representing former premier Najib Abdul Razak, made the remark at the Kuala Lumpur High Court this afternoon over news reports claiming his client took selfies during the hearing.
“If they want to be the fourth or fifth estate, they shouldn't act like estate people,” he had said in reference to the media.
The lawyer's remark also drew brickbats from PSM leader S Arutchelvan, who urged Shafee to display the same degree of professionalism which he is demanding from the media.
Earlier, Shafee told the court that his client did not take photographs, but had used the selfie mode of his mobile phone camera as a mirror.