‘I accept criticisms with an open heart’: New Youth and Sports Minister

PUTRAJAYA (Bernama) – The new Malaysian Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahmani will accept criticisms against him with an open heart

The Muar MP said he was aware of questions raised by many quarters on his capability to be a minister at such a young age and as a first-time MP.

“I accept them with an open heart and the best way to answer the criticisms is not to take them as a personal issue, but through my work at the ministry,” he said after a briefing and the handing-over of duties from his predecessor Khairy Jamaluddin.

Syed Saddiq, 25, is the youngest minister in the country’s history. He took his oath of office with 12 Cabinet ministers and 23 deputy ministers before the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V at the Istana Negara on Monday.

The Youth Chief of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) said he was aware of a petition rejecting him for the position of federal minister and regarded it as a misunderstanding. The petition was said to have gone viral on social media a week after the Pakatan Harapan victory in the 14th General Election.

Meanwhile, former youth and sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin said he was confident that Syed Saddiq and his deputy Steven Sim Chee Keong would bring more success to the ministry.

The Rembau MP said what was even more gratifying was that Syed Saddiq was a product of the ministry through the Perdana Fellows programme, and he was a recipient of the Prime Minister’s award when he (Khairy) was the youth and sports minister.

“I am very impressed that in so short a time, the Yang Berhormat minister has proven his character and ability as a respected young leader by friends and opponents.

“Hopefully Malaysians can give him a chance. Do not look at age … Age is just a number. We need to look at performance,” he said.