Mat Sabu, from renowned speaker to minister

12 May 2018 / 18:46 H.

AMANAH president Mohamad Sabu (pix), or Mat Sabu, is a well-known political figure, often praised for his oratory skills.
Popular among the grassroots, Mat Sabu often drew huge crowds throughout the country with speeches on 'hot' topics, controversies and jokes relating to local politics.
Although he had previously been labelled as a politician with an outdated approach and one sans the image of a national leader, Mat Sabu has now proven he is not just a 'crowd puller' at talks, after being appointed as Defense Minister in the newly formed cabinet of the Pakatan Harapan government.
Born on Oct 14, 1954, in Tasek Gelugor, Penang, he obtained his early education in the state before continuing his studies at the Institut Teknologi Mara, now known as Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM)
He is married to Normah Alwi, and has four children.
Mat Sabu's political career began when he joined the Malaysian Islamic Youth Movement (Abim) in 1975, before joining PAS in 1981.
Mat Sabu held various posts in PAS, including as PAS deputy president from 2013 to 2015, PAS vice-president, and PAS Youth deputy chief from 1989 to 1991.
He was detained twice under the Internal Security Act or ISA, from 1984 to 1986 on charges of being involved in extremist movements, and from 1987 to 1989 under the operation codenamed Ops Lalang which was launched by police to arrest those deemed to have caused chaos during the political scene back then.
Mat Sabu has been a member of parliament three times, for Nilam Puri, Kelantan from 1990 to 1995, Kubang Kerian, Kelantan from 1995 to 1999 and Kuala Kedah, Kedah from 1999 to 2004.
On Sept 16, 2015 Mat Sabu founded PAS-splinter party Amanah, and became its first president.
Amanah was formed following PAS' action of ending its political cooperation with DAP, which ultimately led to the disbandment of the Pakatan Rakyat coalition comprising PKR, DAP and PAS at the time. — Bernama

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