PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli initially saw the lighter side of a flier which contained his phone number in a sex-for-hire advertisement.
But on a serious note, the incident has also made him wonder about socio-economic factors with regard to the Malays.
“Jokes aside, out of 10 messages asking for sex, nine are Malay youths. Points to ponder,” he had tweeted this morning.
Speaking to Malaysiakini later, Rafizi said he found the trend to be disconcerting.
“There seems to be a disconnect. On one extreme, you have much rhetoric about Islam, but it appears disconnected with what is happening on the ground..
“Though quantitatively, the nine out of 10 messages and calls I received is not sufficient to prove anything, but qualitatively, you have to wonder.
“They were youths, and they were bold enough to call and message. In reality, there is a lot less emphasis on Islamic values on the ground, and it is showing,” he added.
Rafizi said the political contest is about the brand of Islam, as opposed to ushering differences in individuals with Islamic values.
He argued that the latter is more important.
“What I am most concerned, based on my experience from these nine out of 10 youths is that they seem to be the lesser educated and poorer Malays.
“Because of the socio-economic situation, the situation is worsening on the ground. Poverty and hardship push them further away from Islamic values,” he added.
Rafizi is concerned that the political rhetoric on Islam and the disconnect with the ground have led to negative effects becoming silently pervasive among the Malays.
In one of his tweets, the PKR leader uploaded a screen capture of a conversation with a youth soliciting for sex in which he tells the caller, “I am a member of Parliament, I don’t provide sex service.”
The flier, according to one Twitter user, was circulated in Subang Jaya.
It contained a series of phone numbers printed below the images of several women, with the caption ‘Are you lonely?’
Rafizi’s number appeared below the photograph of a woman called ‘Rara’, which incidentally is the nickname for popular DAP member Young Shefura Othman.
Asked who could be responsible for this, the PKR leader refused to point fingers.
“I don’t know. If I say it is Umno, I will get sued. You can’t prove it,” he said.
“Nobody in their right mind would do it unless they are paid,” he said, pointing out that it entailed both printing and circulation cost.
“So I don’t think it is a prank. Whoever did this wanted to create a nuisance for us,” he added.
Rafizi also believes that the other numbers in the flier are also that of politicians.
Previously, former Bersih chairperson Ambiga Sreenavasan, her successor Maria Chin Abdullah and the electoral watchdog’s secretariat member Mandeep Singh also received lewd messages and phone calls after their phone numbers were circulated. –Malaysiakini