Zahid denies using army to campiagn in Permatang Pasir

(Bernama) – Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has denied that he is using the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM) to campaign for Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate Rohaizat Othman.

He said services rendered by ATM members to people of Permatang Pasir were not to canvass for votes in the coming state by-election.

"The services given under the 'Jiwa Murni' programme is not due to politics. We help them in areas that we are good at like medical, engineering and religion.

"The Opposition must change their mindset. Don't just find fault with everything that we do," he said after the opening of Tuanku Mizan Armed Forces Hospital here Thursday.

PAS vice president Datuk Mahfuz Omar claimed in party portal Harakah Daily that Zahid had used ATM to give free medical treatment to voters on behalf of Umno and BN.

Zahid also said the military police escorting him during election campaigns should not be regarded as abuse of power.

"Although I am the Defence Minister, I did not ask outriders to accompany me to every place (in Permatang Pasir). I did not use them to campaign." he said.

He said as the defence minister, he had the right to such a privilege aimed at protecting his safety.