Former minister says differences in opinion does not justify calls for action against ex-AG
KUALA LUMPUR – Former minister Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz has slammed those wanting action taken against former attorney-general (AG) Tan Sri Tommy Thomas over his new book just because their views differed from the published memoir.
In a Facebook post, Rafidah, who is known as the “Iron Lady”, said there is no political correctness in putting pen to paper, while pointing out that memoirs are supposed to be historical accounts based on the writers’ personal knowledge and views on related matters.
“Any person who writes his or her personal memoir cannot be forced to view things from the readers, analysts or commentators’ viewpoints.
“One cannot chastise or shoot the messenger because one does not like the message, maybe because it differs from one’s views or perceptions.
“If the writer is conveying the message from his or her personal perspective, then we should respect that. No one is allowed to guide me as I write my memoirs.”
Following the release of his book, My Story: Justice in the Wilderness, last week, Thomas has been on the receiving end of much flak from various quarters.
Among others, there have been multiple reports lodged, probes initiated by the Home Ministry, calls to seize and ban the book, as well as those who threatened legal action.
Rafidah stressed that it is not wrong to have an own interpretation of a particular historical event that had undeniably happened.
“Thomas has written his memoir. We may have different views. But that does not give anyone the right to call for banning the book. It is a worrying trend, where there is no room for dissent and diversity of views.”
Rafidah recalled how she had similarly become victim of untruths, in her official ministerial capacity, in another person’s autobiography, but she chose to let it go.
She said it was sufficient that she knew she was right, while pointing out that she had not pointed out to the writer about the error in the book.