PUTRAJAYA: Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein has refuted claims that he had planned and led the meeting between 22 members of parliament (MP) from Barisan Nasional (BN) and Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali last night.
The Sembrong MP and former Umno vice-president said the allegation against him was something that was fabricated by an Umno Supreme Council Member Datuk Lokman Adam.
He said what Lokman said about his role in the meeting was ‘fitnah’ (libel).
“The allegation that I had led a meeting between Azmin Ali and opposition MPs last night is not true. I was not the one who had planned the meeting,” the former defence minister wrote on his official Twitter account.
Lokman, in a statement, had accused Hishammuddin of betraying the people when he arranged for the meeting between Azmin, who is PKR deputy president, and opposition MPs.
Lokman had said that the people who were most affected by Hishammuddin’s action were Tanjung Piai constituents, who voted and helped BN to secure its victory during the Nov 16 by-election.
He had claimed that party workers from BN and Pas, who worked hard to ensure BN’s victory in the by-election, were disappointed with Hishammuddin.
However, Hishamuddin said he was prepared to be investigated if the Umno Disciplinary Board decided to launch a probe against him over the meeting, which took place at Azmin’s residence at Precint 10 here.
“I have nothing to hide,” Hishamuddin said.
It was reported that Hishammuddin was among a long list of MPs who attended the meeting at Azmin’s residence last night.
The MPs began arriving since 7pm before they began to leave the residence in stages starting at 11pm.
The last to leave was PKR vice-president Zuraida Kamarudin, who is Housing and Local Government minister.
Among the other MPs who went were Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Kamaruddin Jaffar.
Besides Hishammuddin, the other BN MPs in attendance were Datin Mastura Mohd Yazid (Kuala Kangsar), Datuk Abdul Rahman Mohamad (Lipis), Datuk Seri Ismail Abd Muttalib (Maran), Datuk Seri Ahmad Hamzah (Jasin), Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim (Arau), Datuk Seri Dr Ismail Mohamed Said (Kuala Krau), Datuk Hasbullah Osman (Gerik), Mohd Shahar Abdullah (Paya Besar), Datuk Jalaludin Alias (Jelebu), Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said (Pengerang), Datuk Noriani Ahmad (Parit Sulong).
Cameron Highlands MP Ramli Mohd Nor, who is another BN MP who attended the meeting, said there was nothing discussed when the opposition lawmakers met Azmin.