Sharifah: 'Listen, listen' video spun to support opposition

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An embattled Sharifah Zohra Jabeen Syed Shah Miskin has broken her silence on the infamous 'listen, listen' video recording of her berating a law student.

She has claimed that it has been "creatively spun" to gather support for an opposition party, which she did not name.

As at this morning, the video had recorded more than 735,000 views.

Sharifah Zohra, who heads the NGO Suara Wanita 1Malaysia (SW1M), had stopped University Utara Malaysia (UUM) law student KS Bawani (right) from speaking at a forum last month, telling her to "listen" 11 times.

"This issue was creatively spun to gather emotional support for an opposition-led party. As such I do not wish to further pounce [sic] on this for the sake of our NGO SW1M (Suara Wanita 1Malaysia)," she said in a video uploaded on Youtube yesterday.

The seven-minute footage, which disallows viewers from posting comments, shows Sharifah Zohra - now known as 'Kak Listen' - in a coat that displays a 1Malaysia badge.

In the recording, she reads her statement from a prepared text [reproduced here without editing] :

"Dear Malaysians, I appeal to you, listen, listen and listen, let me explain, please listen and rationalise," she starts, with a smile.

"First and foremost, I forgive the young girl in the video (Bawani) for whatever she said, and did before, during and after the forum.

"This kind of act of forgiveness are also extended to those whom had jumped into the bandwagon and hurled harsh words towards me without checking their grounds or getting their facts right."

Various student groups and political parties have demanded that she apologises to Bawani.

However Sharifah Zohra said the only party that deserves her apology is UUM, including forum advisor Syahmi Zakaria and UUM student representative council president Ku Amirul Faiz Ku Seman.

"I would like to take this opportunity to stress that UUM does have students with heart and soul and this makes them better leaders in the future.

"As such, I hereby sincerely apologise to UUM for this matter was totally out of my control by way of irresponsible people turning it into a catastrophe."

Describing the recording of the forum proceedings as a "politically altered sensational video", Sharifah said it has caused undue stress to her family especially her young children.

"I fear for the safety of my family as I have been receiving threatening SMS from irresponsible individuals, groups and even political parties. Our office was also ambushed and threats were hurled at our doorstep."

'Vulgar personal remarks'

Appearing calm and confident throughout the recording, she said the "harsh, insensitive, offensive yet vulgar personal remarks" attacking her "dignity and professionalism" are aimed to destroy her reputation and damage the credibility of SW1M.

"I am bewildered to note that some irresponsible individuals had taken advantage and merchandise this phenomenal Youtube sensation 'Listen, Listen, Listen' on items such as t-shirt, video clips, sound bites, remixes in disco techs, caller ring tones, duplicating local artist songs with self-made lyrics, radio stations, and not forgetting stand-up comedy stage show."

Sharifah Zohra questioned these "irresponsible entities" for not highlighting the pledge read out during the forum to call on youths to reject the unhealthy culture of street demonstration and foreign influences.

She claimed that the video, which has turned her into "sort of an overnight celebrity", was posted to distract public attention from bigger issues such as the abuse of students, women and children in street demonstrations, the water crisis in the Klang valley, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues.

Sharifah Zohra also said it is also regrettable that critics have mocked her religion, Islam.

Most viewers have condemned her for suppressing Bawani's freedom of speech, but Sharifah Zohra said it was "simply a communication issue between two people".

       

She described the action of posting only one part of the forum video as a "cunning tactic works to propagate the heinous act of condemning, hating, disgracing and mocking of an innocent woman".

"The Malaysian public failed to see the whole length of the video and sadly assumed and further jumped into concluding it themselves," said Sharifah Zohra, appealing to the public to watch all four parts.

"Sadly the cunning people only highlighted part four of the video. Let me reiterate, there was no act of condemning the students of the nation nor neglecting freedom of speech per se .

"I am a mother, and works hard to make decent living. I am just a normal person without any positions or stakes in any political party. I appeal to the Malaysian public not to let yourself be entrapped in the game of hatred created by some for whatsoever reason behind the scene."

She did not mention that she was previously the deputy Wanita chief of the Malaysian Indian Muslim Congress, an associate party of Umno.

"Let us heal the nation, stop the game of hatred here and now," she appealed.

Before concluding her statement, she again apologised to the public and to "all the students in Malaysia which were somehow manipulated in this issue".

Related stories

'Was Bawani planted at UUM forum?'

'Kak Listen' won't meet Bawani in face-to-face debate

Bawani faces her troubles with a smile

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