Zahidi Zainul Abidin

Datuk Zahidi bin Zainul Abidin (Jawi: زاهدي بن زين العابدين; born 9 January 1961) is a Malaysian politician who has served as Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia for the second term in the Barisan Nasional (BN) administration under Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob and Minister Annuar Musa since August 2021. He served his first term in the Perikatan Nasional (PN) administration under former Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and former Minister Saifuddin Abdullah from March 2020 to August 2021, Chairman of the Rubber Industry Smallholders Development Authority (RISDA) from 2015 to 2018 and Member of the Perlis State Executive Council (EXCO) in the BN state administration under former Menteri Besar Shahidan Kassim from 1999 to 2006. He has served as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Padang Besar since May 2013. He was a former member of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) and its Padang Besar division chief. He is also the Chairman of the Malaysian International Institute of Islamic Cooperation (IKIAM).[1]

Zahidi Zainul Abidin
DMSM
زاهدي زين العابدين
Ministerial roles
2020–2022Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia
Exco roles (Perlis)
1999–2003Deputy Chairman of the Education
2003–2006Chairman of the Investment, Trade, Science, Technology, Consumerism and Agro-based Industry
Faction represented in Dewan Rakyat
2013–2022Barisan Nasional
Faction represented in Perlis State Legislative Assembly
1999–2008Barisan Nasional
Other roles
2015–2018Chairman of Rubber Industry Smallholders Development Authority (RISDA)
Personal details
Born
Zahidi bin Zainul Abidin

(1961-01-09) 9 January 1961
CitizenshipMalaysian
Political partyUnited Malays National Organisation (UMNO)
(–2022)
Independent
(Since 2023)
Other political
affiliations
Barisan Nasional (BN)
(–2022)
Muafakat Nasional
(2019–2022)
OccupationPolitician
Zahidi Zainul Abidin on Facebook
Zahidi Zainul Abidin on Parliament of Malaysia

Zahidi received his Diploma in Public Administration from Institut Teknologi MARA (Universiti Teknologi MARA).[2] Zahidi joined the PKR by submit his membership form to PKR on 4 February 2023.[3]

Political offices

Zahidi has held various positions in politics and UMNO:

YearDesignation
1991–1993Islamic Education Chief for UMNO Youth Malaysia
1993Deputy Chief of UMNO Youth Kangar Division
1998Members of The Training and Student Council UMNO Youth Malaysia.
1998International UMNO Youth Council Member
1998UMNO International Bureau
1991–1998UMNO Malaysia Youth Education Bureau
1994–1998Perlis Deputy UMNO Youth Chief
1994–2001UMNO Padang Besar Youth Chief
1998–2001UMNO Perlis Youth Chief
2001–2004UMNO Malaysia Youth Exco
2008–2022UMNO Padang Besar Divisional Chief
2020–2022Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia

Controversies

In September 2020, Zahidi caused a nationwide outrage when he falsely accused a Sabahan foundation student named Veveonah Mosibin from Universiti Malaysia Sabah of trying to popularise her YouTube channel when she posted a video of her in a hut on top of a tree struggling to take an exam. Veveonah at the time had to stay home due to Malaysia's Movement Control Order (MCO) to stop the COVID-19 outbreak in the country and had to go on top of tree to get signal for internet connection.[4] Zahidi was later made to apologise for his inaccurate remark in Dewan Negara and informed that it was Abdul Rahim Bakri of Kudat MP who told him that Veveonah did not have exams on the day she uploaded the video, of which, later clarified otherwise by the university's chairman, Masidi Manjun.[5][6][7]

The aftermath of the incident had brought Zahidi's academic credentials under spotlight for purportedly dubious academic qualification while Veveonah's hometown district got 13 new telecommunication towers expeditiously installed with 4G connection under the JENDELA program.[8][9]

Personal life

In January 2021, Zahidi was tested positive for COVID-19 and sent to Sungai Buloh Hospital for treatment.[10] He was discharged after 11 days.[11]

Election results

Perlis State Legislative Assembly[12]
Year Constituency Candidate Votes Pct Opponent(s) Votes Pct Ballots cast Majority Turnout
1999 N2 Beseri Zahidi Zainul Abidin (UMNO) 2,774 58.66% Abd. Rahman Rejab (PAS) 1,955 41.34% 5,069 819 73.77%
2004 Zahidi Zainul Abidin (UMNO) 3,492 68.30% Mohd Anuar Mohd Tahir (PAS) 1,621 31.70% 5,222 1,871 78.59%
2022 N1 Titi Tinggi Zahidi Zainul Abidin (IND) 425 4.43% Izzam Ibrahim (BERSATU) 5,601 58.42% 9,748 3,785 72.70%
Teh Chai Aan (MCA) 1,816 18.94%
Teh Seng Chuan (DAP) 1,512 15.77%
Mohd Shahril Md Sarif (PEJUANG) 152 1.59%
Khaw Hock Kong (WARISAN) 81 0.84%
Parliament of Malaysia[13][14][15]
Year Constituency Candidate Votes Pct Opponent(s) Votes Pct Ballots cast Majority Turnout
2013 P001 Padang Besar, Perlis Zahidi Zainul Abidin (UMNO) 21,473 60.45% Azamhari Mohamood (PAS) 14,047 39.55% 36,142 7,426 86.11%
2018 Zahidi Zainul Abidin (UMNO) 15,032 41.18% Izizam Ibrahim (BERSATU) 13,594 37.24% 37,432 1,438 81.20%
Mokhtar Senik (PAS) 7,874 21.57%
2022 Zahidi Zainul Abidin (IND) 1,939 1.56% Rushdan Rusmi (PAS) 24,267 53.58% 45,288 12,514 75.24%
Zahida Zarik Khan (UMNO) 11,753 25.95%
Mohd Saat @ Yahya (AMANAH) 7,085 15.64%
Ko Chu Liang (WARISAN) 244 0.54%

Honours

Honours of Malaysia

  •  Malacca:
    • Companion Class I of the Exalted Order of Malacca (DMSM) – Datuk (2003)[16]

References

  1. Directory."Institut Kerjasama Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia (IKIAM", IKIAM, 25 April 2013.
  2. "BIODATA". SUARA TV. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  3. "Zahidi claims many Umno leaders will follow him to join PKR". Malay Mail. 30 January 2023.
  4. "Veveonah Quits Social Media After False Accusations From Minister: The minister accused her of lying about her examinations for fame". The Rakyat Post. 7 September 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2021.
  5. "Minister apologises to 'tree girl' Veveonah for inaccurate remark". New Straits Times. 4 September 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2021.
  6. "Zahidi says Kudat MP told him Veveonah did not have exams on day she uploaded video". The Star. 7 September 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2021.
  7. "Veveonah was having her exams at time of video, confirms UMS". The Star. 8 September 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2021.
  8. "Zahidi's academic credentials under spotlight after Veveonah jibe". MalaysiaKini. 8 September 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2021.
  9. "Pitas rep pushing for fast-tracking of 13 new telco towers in district". The Star. 12 October 2020. Retrieved 15 January 2021.
  10. "Controversial Deputy Communications Minister Is Covid-19 Positive". The Rakyat Post. 13 January 2021. Retrieved 16 January 2021.
  11. Ida Lim (27 January 2021). "Here's the full list of Malaysia's ministers, lawmakers who tested Covid-19 positive in January". Malay Mail. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  12. "Keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum Parlimen/Dewan Undangan Negeri". Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 14 April 2010. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  13. "Malaysia General Election". undiinfo Malaysian Election Data. Malaysiakini. Retrieved 4 February 2018. Results only available from the 2004 election.
  14. "SEMAKAN KEPUTUSAN PILIHAN RAYA UMUM KE – 14" (in Malay). Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 17 May 2018. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  15. "The Star Online GE14". The Star. Retrieved 24 May 2018. Percentage figures based on total turnout.
  16. "The Malacca Yang Di-Pertua Negri's Birthday Honours List". The Star. 12 October 2003. Retrieved 24 September 2018.


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