Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman

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Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman
MP
سيد صديق سيد عبدالرحمن
Syed Saddiq (cropped).jpg
Saddiq in 2019
Minister of Youth and Sports
In office
2 July 2018 – 24 February 2020
MonarchMuhammad V
(2018–2019)
Abdullah
(2019–2020)
Prime MinisterMahathir Mohamad
DeputySteven Sim
Preceded byKhairy Jamaluddin
Succeeded byReezal Merican Naina Merican
ConstituencyMuar
1st President of the
Malaysian United Democratic Alliance
Assumed office
17 September 2020
Preceded byPosition established
ConstituencyMuar
1st Youth Chief of the
Malaysian United Indigenous Party
In office
7 September 2016 – 28 May 2020
PresidentMuhyiddin Yassin
DeputyMohd Aizat Roslan
ChairmanMahathir Mohamad
(2018–2020)
Muhyiddin Yassin (Acting) (2020)
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byWan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal
ConstituencyMuar
Member of the Malaysian Parliament
for Muar
Assumed office
9 May 2018
Preceded byRazali Ibrahim (UMNOBN)
Majority6,953 (2018)
Personal details
Born
Syed Saddiq bin Syed Abdul Rahman

(1992-12-06) 6 December 1992 (age 29)
Pulai, Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Political partyBERSATU (2016–2020)
Independent (2020)
MUDA (since 2020)
Other political
affiliations
Pakatan Harapan
(2016–2020, allied : since 2020)
EducationRoyal Military College
Alma materInternational Islamic University Malaysia (LLB)
OccupationPolitician
Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman on Facebook
Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman on Parliament of Malaysia

Syed Saddiq bin Syed Abdul Rahman (Jawi: سيد صديق بن سيد عبدالرحمن; born 6 December 1992) is a Malaysian politician who has served as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Muar since May 2018. He served as the Minister of Youth and Sports in the Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration under former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad from July 2018 to the collapse of the PH administration in February 2020. He is a founding member of the Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (MUDA) and has served as 1st President of MUDA since the founding in September 2020. He was also a founding member of the Malaysian United Indigenous Party (BERSATU), a former component party of the PH coalition and served as 1st Youth Chief of BERSATU from the founding in September 2016 to his removal from the party in May 2020.

Early life and education[edit]

Saddiq was born on 6 December 1992 in Pulai, Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia. His father is a Singaporean, who used to work as a construction worker in Singapore. His mother used to be an English teacher.[1] The youngest of four siblings, he had studied at the Royal Military College (RMC) before continuing his studies at the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) in Bachelor of Laws (LLB). During his time at IIUM, he competed in an Asian-level debate competition and successfully won the United Asian Debating Championship (UADC).[2] He is widely known in the debating community after having won Asia’s Best Speaker award at the Asian British Parliamentary (ABP) Debating Championship three times.[3]

In 2017, he allegedly rejected a scholarship worth about RM400,000 to pursue his studies at Oxford University, England to remain active in politics.[4] A year later, after being elected as MP at the age of 25, Syed Saddiq once again allegedly dismissed another scholarship offer, this time rejecting the Chevening Scholarship proposal to pursue a Master in Public Policy at Oxford University.[5]

In April 2021, he successfully completed the Lee Kuan Yew Senior Fellowship in Public Service Programme at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore.[6][7][8]

Political career[edit]

Early political career and formation of BERSATU[edit]

Saddiq as a law graduate came to prominence in 2016 when he joined 24 other youths, a group that called themselves Change Led by the Young Generation (Challenger), published a statement rejecting Najib Razak’s leadership over the scandal of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).[3]

Saddiq was the leader of ARMADA (Angkatan Bersatu Anak Muda); the youth wing of the BERSATU.[9] He has been a spokesperson for the party since its inception in September 2016 and is considered one of the founding members and sits on the party council.[10][11]

2018 Malaysian general election, Minister of Youth and Sports[edit]

Saddiq made his debut contesting the 2018 general election (GE14) for the Muar parliamentary seat and was elected to the Parliament.[12][13][14] He was then appointed as the Minister of Youth and Sports in the PH new government making him the youngest ever federal minister in 2018 since Malaysia's independence.[3][15]

He is the youngest cabinet Minister to be appointed at the age of 25 as well as the third youngest MP after also 2018-elected P. Prabakaran (21) and 1976-elected Najib Razak (22) since Independence in the history of Malaysia.[16][17] He was even mocked as 'cucu' , literally means 'grandson' for his youthfulness in the Parliament house.[18]

Undi18 effort[edit]

As the Minister of Youth and Sports, Saddiq has pushed for a lower voting age, or eligibility to vote in Malaysia, from 21 to 18 years old ahead of the 15th General Election (GE15), an effort dubbed as "Undi18".[19] However, he has agreed that first a political exposure programme for the young people of Malaysia is needed.[20] In July 2019, Saddiq has tabled a Bill in Parliament to amend the Federal Constitution to lower the voting age to 18[21] but was withdrawn and re-tabled later after it was tweaked to accommodate some changes.[22] The Dewan Rakyat on 16 July unanimously passed the re-tabled Constitution (Amendment) Act 2019 bill to lower the voting age, as well as eligibility to contest in election to 18 and automatic registration of voters by Election Commission (EC).[23][24][25] In November 2021, the constitutional amendment was finally gazetted which stated that Undi18 amendments would come into effect for implementation on 15 December as consented by Yang di-Pertuan Agong.[26][27][28]

Expulsion from BERSATU[edit]

He became an Independent in May 2020 after being terminated as a member and 1st Youth Chief of the Malaysian United Indigenous Party (BERSATU), which was a component party of the then-ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition.[29]

Following his expulsion from BERSATU, Mahathir and his-led MPs have formed a new party,[30] named Party of Homeland's Fighters (PEJUANG).[31] However instead of joining PEJUANG, on 21 August Syed Saddiq announced that he will be establishing a new multi-racial, youth-centric party.[32][33]

Formation of MUDA[edit]

On 17 September 2020, Saddiq launched and co-founded the Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (MUDA) and was officially registered as political party on 23 December 2021.[34]

Controversies[edit]

Corruption charges[edit]

Criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of funds[edit]

On July 2021, he was charged with criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of funds belonging to his former party, BERSATU. For the first charge, Syed Saddiq, the then-BERSATU's youth chief, was charged with criminal breach of trust for withdrawing RM1.12 million via a cheque without BERSATU's supreme council's approval. He was charged with another accusation of misappropriating RM120,000 in BERSATU donation money intended for the 2018 general election. He had claimed trial to both counts of corruption and was released on bail of RM330,000 with additional conditions.[35] He claimed that the allegations were brought against him because he refused to back the Perikatan Nasional administration.[36]

On August 2021, Syed Saddiq had been charged again with two corruption charges of money laundering. According to the charge sheet, the accused transferred RM50,000 from his bank account to his Amanah Saham Bumiputera account on 16 June 2018 and another RM50,000 on 19 June 2018. Saddiq pleaded not guilty to the charges.[37]

Outspoken comments[edit]

Saddiq is an avid social media user and regularly posts about political and social issues in Malaysia. On September 2015, Saddiq said he would "teach" Nurul Hidayah, the daughter of ex-Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who criticized participants in the Bersih 4.0 demonstration.[38] On November 2015, Saddiq admitted that he had supported Najib Razak, but later said Najib had embarrassed the country because of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad scandal.[39] On October 2018, he said that Ketuanan Melayu had ended by calling the term nothing more than a mere meaningless phrase. His statement then evoked various responses from many parties.[40] He defended the actions of four academics who allegedly submitted an executive summary on the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to the Conference of Rulers and insisted their actions were part of the academic freedom promised by Pakatan Harapan (PH) in celebrating democracy and differences of opinion in Malaysia.[41]

Relationship with Tunku Ismail Idris[edit]

In 2019, he denied being in an "open warfare" with the Crown Prince of Johor, Tunku Ismail Idris. He responded on his Twitter to Tunku Ismail Idris that there were some parties had considered it a “declaration of war”.[42]

Probed for video on police brutality[edit]

In May 2021, he was investigated by the Malaysian police for a video he posted on Tik Tok. In this video, he demanded justice for the late A. Ganapathy who recently died in police custody. Saddiq starts the video[43] with the hashtag #justiceforganapathy and goes on to describe the serious injuries inflicted on Ganapathy that ultimately led to his death. Saddiq continues by saying "police brutality is a serious issue" and then he begins to list the names of the men that have died in police custody custody from the year 2009 to 2021. Saddiq then ends the video by encouraging viewers to "push for the IPCMC bill (to establish the Independent Police Complaints & Misconduct Commission) and to push for justice".

On 22 May 2021, the police brought Saddiq into the Dang Wangi District Police Headquarters, seized his phone and took control of his Instagram and Tik Tok accounts after being instructed to do so by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).[44] According to Datuk Mohd Azman Ahmad Sapri, the deputy director of the Bukit Aman Criminal Investigation Department, Saddiq was being investigated under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code[45] and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act.[46]

However, MCMC has denied instructing the Royal Malaysia Police (RMP) to seize Saddiq's phone, they merely "acted as a technical agency in assisting police investigation".[47] Despite claims from Saddiq that this was a "politically motivated move orchestrated by MCMC",[44] the MCMC stated that they will continue to "provide assistance and technical recommendations for the investigation without any hidden agenda including political agenda".[47]

Election results[edit]

Parliament of Malaysia[48][49][50]
Year Constituency Government Votes Pct Opposition(s) Votes Pct Ballots cast Majority Turnout
2018 P146 Muar, Johor Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman (BERSATU) 22,341 53.09% Razali Ibrahim (UMNO) 15,388 36.57% 42,719 6,953 84.02%
Abdul Aziz Talib (PAS) 4,354 10.34%

Awards and recognitions[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Amy Chew (21 March 2018). "Johor born Syed Saddiq an emerging voice for Malaysian?". Channel News Asia. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  2. ^ Dina Murad (12 June 2015). "IIUM debate team is Asia's best". The Star Online. Retrieved 24 October 2017.
  3. ^ a b c Amir Yusof (2 July 2018). "Syed Saddiq appointed Malaysia's youngest-ever minister at 25 years old". Channel News Asia. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  4. ^ "Syed Saddiq turns down Oxford for politics". New Straits Times. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  5. ^ "Syed Saddiq turns down Oxford a second time". Free Malaysia Today. 2 June 2018. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  6. ^ "Syed Saddiq says done with Singapore studies, raring to 'rebuild Malaysia', offers RM50,000 to Muar constituents". Malay Mail. Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  7. ^ "Facebook Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman". Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  8. ^ Amir Yusof (4 April 2021). "'I've learnt things I wouldn't have elsewhere': Malaysia's Syed Saddiq on Singapore experience". Channel News Asia. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  9. ^ "Malaysia: Mahathir-led Group Files Paperwork for New Party". BenarNews. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Critics of Malaysian PM submit papers to register new political party". Channel News Asia. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  11. ^ "Bersatu". pribumibersatu.org.my. Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  12. ^ Syed Farradino Omar. "MALAYSIA BAHARU: Syed Saddiq: Muar Kitten Ready to Roar in Putrajaya". Awani Review. Astro Awani. Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  13. ^ "PH's Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman wins Muar". Free Malaysia Today. 10 May 2018. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  14. ^ Amar Shah Mohsen and Haikal Jalil (10 May 2018). "Syed Saddiq: Thank you Muar, Malaysia". The Sun Daily. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
  15. ^ "10 Things About Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman, Asia's Top Debater". Malay Mail. 27 March 2016. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  16. ^ "Dr M, Mukhriz, Syed Saddiq and two others sacked from Bersatu". The Star Online. MSN. 28 May 2020. Retrieved 28 May 2020.
  17. ^ Syed Farradino Omar. "MALAYSIA BAHARU: Syed Saddiq: Muar Kitten Ready to Roar in Putrajaya". Awani Review. Astro Awani. Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  18. ^ Syed Farradino Omar (13 July 2020). "Syed Saddiq ridiculed in Dewan Rakyat: Are youths treated this way in politics?". Astro Awani. Retrieved 7 August 2020.
  19. ^ "Voting age should be lowered to 18, says Syed Saddiq – Nation |". The Star Online. 6 July 2018. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  20. ^ "Gov't aims to lower voting age to empower youth: Syed Saddiq". New Straits Times. 23 July 2018. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
  21. ^ Hemananthani Sivanandam, Martin Carvalho, Rahimy Rahim and Tarrence Tan (4 July 2019). "Bill to lower voting age tabled for first reading". The Star Online. Retrieved 16 July 2019.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  22. ^ Hemananthani Sivanandam, Martin Carvalho, Rahimy Rahim and Tarrence Tan (10 July 2019). "Govt withdraws 'Vote at 18' Bill to tweak it (corrected)". The Star Online. Retrieved 16 July 2019.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  23. ^ Hemananthani Sivanandam, Martin Carvalho Rahimy Rahim and Tarrence Tan (16 July 2019). "Dewan Rakyat passes Bill to amend Federal Constitution to lower voting age to 18". The Star Online. Retrieved 16 July 2019.
  24. ^ Nuradzimmah Daim, Nor Ain Mohamed Radhi (16 July 2019). "Dewan Rakyat approves 'Vote 18'". New Straits Times. Retrieved 16 July 2019.
  25. ^ Clarissa Chung (16 July 2019). "Syed Saddiq lauds move to lower voting age to 18". The Star Online. Retrieved 16 July 2019.
  26. ^ "EC instructed to implement Undi 18 by December in compliance with court order". Bernama. New Straits Times. 7 September 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2021.
  27. ^ "Undi18, automatic voter registration gazetted on Dec 1 - EC". Bernama. Astro Awani. 2 December 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2021.
  28. ^ "Undi18 gazetted, takes effect on Dec 15". Free Malaysia Today. 1 December 2021. Retrieved 2 December 2021.
  29. ^ "Dr M, Mukhriz, Syed Saddiq and two others sacked from Bersatu". The Star Online. MSN. 28 May 2020. Retrieved 28 May 2020.
  30. ^ "Tun Mahathir umum akan tubuh parti Melayu baharu". 7 August 2020. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  31. ^ "Tun M umum nama parti baharu, Parti Pejuang Tanah Air". 12 August 2020. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  32. ^ "Syed Saddiq bayangkan tak sertai PEJUANG, tubuh parti baharu". Berita Harian. 21 August 2020. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  33. ^ "Syed Saddiq's youth 'party' won't succeed, Pejuang will be kingmaker, says Mahathir". Malaysia Today. 3 September 2020. Retrieved 5 September 2020.
  34. ^ Yiswaree Paransamy (29 December 2021). "Syed Saddiq says Muda officially registered". Malay Mail. Retrieved 29 December 2021.
  35. ^ Umavathi Ramayah (22 July 2021). "Syed Saddiq mengaku tidak bersalah atas dua tuduhan pecah amanah". Astro Awani (in Malay). Archived from the original on 22 July 2021. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  36. ^ "Syed Saddiq vows to clear name in court over corruption charges". The Star. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  37. ^ "Syed Saddiq charged with two counts of money laundering". The Star. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  38. ^ Zulkifli, Zulaikha (4 September 2015). "Pendebat terbaik Asia 'sekolahkan' anak TPM". Malaysiakini. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  39. ^ Mustafa, Muzliza (29 November 2015). "Dulu penyokong tegar, kini johan debat Asia kecam Najib". The Malaysian Insider. Archived from the original on 24 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  40. ^ Azil, Firdaus (28 October 2018). "'Perlahan-lahan kita hunus keris ke hati sendiri' - Syed Saddiq". Astro Awani. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  41. ^ Ahmad Suhael Adnan (9 April 2019). "Syed Saddiq pertahan tindakan 4 ahli akademik". Free Malaysia Today. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  42. ^ Elly Fazaniza (10 April 2019). "Syed Saddiq denies 'open warfare' with TMJ". The Sun Daily. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
  43. ^ "Syed Saddiq's Tik Tok video".
  44. ^ a b "After 2-hour probe, Syed Saddiq has his phone seized by cops". Free Malaysia Today. 22 May 2021.
  45. ^ "S505(b) Penal Code as of February 2018" (PDF).
  46. ^ "Section 233 Communications Act 1998 ( Improper use of network facilities or network service, etc.)" (PDF).
  47. ^ a b "MCMC denies ordering police to seize Syed Saddiq's handphone".
  48. ^ "Malaysia General Election". undiinfo Malaysian Election Data. Malaysiakini. Retrieved 4 February 2018. Results only available from the 2004 election.
  49. ^ "SEMAKAN KEPUTUSAN PILIHAN RAYA UMUM KE – 14" (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 17 May 2018. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  50. ^ "The Star Online GE14". The Star. Retrieved 24 May 2018. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  51. ^ Najiha. "NONA Man Inspiring Award Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman". Nona (in Malay). Retrieved 15 January 2022.
  52. ^ "Nona Superhero Award- Teaser Superhero: List Superhero Award: 2021". Nona (in Malay). Retrieved 16 January 2022.
Political offices
Preceded by Minister of Youth and Sports (Malaysia)
2 July 2018–24 February 2020
Succeeded by
Parliament of Malaysia
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Muar
9 May 2018–present
Incumbent
Party political offices
New title President of Malaysian United Democratic Alliance
17 September 2020–present
Incumbent
New title Youth Chief of Malaysian United Indigenous Party
7 September 2016–28 May 2020
Succeeded by