Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq gained media attention again, appearing in about 50 articles daily from October 21 to 23.
His media exposure slowed down mid-October after making numerous headlines earlier in the month because of the Foodpanda issue.
This time, Syed Saddiq made headlines due to several issues rather than just one.
First, he was criticized over the RM4 million allocation to upgrade one football field and six futsal courts in Tanjung Piai.
People questioned the timing of the allocation as the Tanjung Piai by election is just around the corner, set to commence on November 16.
Next, videos and images of Syed Saddiq with a mysterious woman in his ministry surfaced online. The media named the woman “Cleopatra” because her Instagram username cleopatra_x3.
Some claimed that the Youth and Sports Minister hired Cleopatra as his personal assistant, and is a transgender.
However, the allegation turned out to be untrue. Cleopatra’s ex-husband revealed her real name, Nur Fathiah Syazwana Shaharuddin, and confirmed that she is a real woman.
Additionally, she is a delegate from Cleo International Sdn Bhd. Interestingly, the entity was reported to be only about a week old. Prior to October 16, the company was known as Mideast Peak Sdn Bhd.
Furthermore, Syed Saddiq hit out at former DAP member Hew Kuan Yau for being a racist. Hew’s comic book becomes a controversial topic for its overly positive portrayal of China. One of the panels in the comic labelled Malays who sympathise with the plight of China’s Uyghurs as “radicals”.
On another occasion, he urged DAP to take disciplinary action against its member Ronnie Liu for saying that Pakatan Harapan would remain strong as a government even without Bersatu.
In his capacity as Armada chief, Syed Saddiq threatened to retaliate on DAP if Ronnie did not apologize within a week. Alternatively, DAP could take disciplinary action on Ronnie.
This is not the first time for Syed Saddiq to be in the media spotlight due to controversial issues. For example, the appointment of LGBT activist Numan Afifi as his press officer, argument with UMNO Youth EXCO Wan Muhammad Azri, urging controversial Indian preacher to be extradited but later made a U-turn decision on his stance, and many more.