Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed said his ministry accepts the apology by Nanyang Siang Pau and will not take further action.
This is over the Chinese daily’s publication of a caricature which depicted PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang and Dewan Rakyat speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia as monkeys.
However, Nur Jazlan cautioned against a repeat of similar publication.
“The Home Ministry will take serious action against any more of such incidents in future.
“We cannot hurt people and then just apologise,” Nanyang Siang Pau quoted him as saying in Gelang Patah, Johor.
Nanyang Siang Pau published the caricature on April 8 .
Titled ‘Monkey Act’, the cartoon published in Nanyang featured one of the monkeys sporting a songkok and labelled as ‘speaker’ while the other wearing a turban called ‘Hadi Awang’ was sitting on an ‘Act 355' tree, clutching a wand in its left hand.
It also showed ‘Hadi Awang’ serving what appeared to be a ‘hot potato’, while the ‘speaker’ jumped from the tree, saying, “Save it for later.”
The cartoon also showed a group of monkeys arguing under the tree.
The cartoon was published in the newspaper two days after Hadi read out his motion to propose a private member’s bill to amend the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act (Act 355) on Thursday.
After speeches from Hadi and PAS secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan, Pandikar had ruled that the debate on the motion would be deferred to the next Dewan Rakyat meeting in July.
The caricature sparked an uproar among PAS supporters, prompting Nanyang Siang Pau to retract the work and apologise.
PAS went ahead with a protest outside the Nanyang Siang Pau headquarters the following day where they crumpled copies of the newspaper.
The party had said it intended to take legal action against the newspaper. -Mkini