A Bukit Gantang parliamentary by-election political candidate, Ismail Saffian, has recently lost an election in Malaysia. He believes that fake photos purporting to show him in a compromising position were to blame.
The scandalous images and a fake letter were distributed right before the election in what he alleged was a “smear campaign.”
The Might of the Pen blog writes: ” He (Saffian) accused Pakatan Rakyat of smearing his good name during the campaign by circulating compromising photographs, supposedly of him, and alleged that he had written a letter to Najib Razak to apologize for his corrupt practices.”
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The Malaysian Insider reports: “With less than 12 hours before polling for the Bukit Gantang parliamentary election begins, Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate Ismail Saffian found himself to be a victim today of what he claims is gutter politics. He was forced today to deny his involvement with a Thai bar girl in a photograph allegedly taken of him in a border town in Thailand. In a specially called press conference late this afternoon, Ismail said a doctored picture showing him with a girl in Southern Thailand was circulated to discredit his credibility.”
The Might of the Pen blog quoted Saffian:“ ‘How could they launch these personal attacks against me, without proof?’ He urged Pakatan to come clean now and admit that the allegations were baseless. The retired human resource manager also said he would need to get a new job now. ‘I still have a family to support,’ he said in an interview yesterday.” He vows not to resort to similar actions. The Star.com reports that “The soft-spoken 49-year-old promised Monday that no matter how many false accusations and insults the opposition throw his way, he would never retaliate in kind.”
imediaethics has reported two other cases where fake photos were used to discredit political candidates, one in Australia and another in Malaysia. You may recall that we had our own home-grown case of doctored photos of a candidate, with the recent vice-presidential contender, Sarah Palin.