Artist-activist Fahmi Reza’s work has always raised eyebrows for questioning authority and the figures behind it. His work has always been controversial and his signature (ex-PM) Najib Razak-clown face design even landed Fahmi in jail for one month in the past though he was later acquitted of sedition charges.
This time around, the graphic artist has once again made Malaysians conflicted after he posted an artwork which depicts Health Director-General, Dr Noor Hisham’s head in a toilet with the word ‘SOP’ in a trash can. The graphic also included the words “Please use the toilet”, which referred to Hisham’s tweet on 24 October.
In case you missed it, the tweet which led Hisham to say that allegedly started when a Twitter-user questioned why the meeting regarding the darurat issue between the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and PM Muhyiddin Yassin which happened last weekend, did not follow the proper SOPs.
Hisham was tagged in the now-deleted tweet which was then replied by another Twitter-user, starting a conversation which then led to Hisham’s reply.
Take a look:
Ever since the DG tweeted that, some netizens agreed with his statement while some think that DG needs to stop policing the rakyat and instead stop the double-standard regarding SOPs between minister and netizens. Some even came up with the theory that DG was actually shading the ministers and the tweet was sarcastic.
Check it out:
So sick seeing ppl cancelling him just bc he said this. He did his job and he did great but suddenly all of that turned to dust just bc he stands on a different pov.
Freedom of speech my ass https://t.co/b9KKp3fXZa
— nadh (@whteverzz) October 24, 2020
Steady boss! https://t.co/ydGbRcaFCC
— PGfloyd (@PGKaizer) October 24, 2020
This is for all of you who put this guy on the pedestal. He isn’t any different from the rest of them. Hypocrite of the highest order, not forgetting condescending. This is uncalled for, and it isn’t the first time. Go on losing all the respect of the people, @DGHisham https://t.co/bvdLbZFxPi
— Sarabmeet Singh (@sarabmeet) October 24, 2020
Disappointed. You’re the only one who can tell them off. https://t.co/pdYhN4IH64
— Tun Fucksal (@TunFucksal) October 24, 2020
imo, what DG Hisham is trying to say is, just because ‘they’ do things against the rule, that doesn’t mean you have to follow them. This is a solid message. https://t.co/vUHlkn7GjB
— ℜ stan account (@budu_trash) October 24, 2020
Opposing the politicians who disregard the SOP is beyond his power.
His message has been clear since day one. Follow the SOP regardless of anything. You used metaphor so @DGHisham also replied using a metaphor. Don’t get why his message is being misunderstood. https://t.co/V7E3VMV7pD
— ❤ (@peachyyypav) October 24, 2020
Meanwhile, as for Fahmi’s take on the DG’s tweet – the artist has obviously been met with many hate and threats regarding the picture, as usual. He responded sarcastically with this tweet:
While many netizens were unsatisfied with Fahmi’s creation stating that it’s disrespectful as the DG has been working hard to help Malaysians flatten the Covid-19 curve (click here to see the comments on FB condemning Fahmi), many have also backed him up:
The criticisms of this cartoon really serve as proof that we place values such as politeness and respect on a higher pedestal than speaking truth to power.
Explains why our independence only came after 200 years of being colonized, when we finally asked for it politely. https://t.co/fDdZ7WgtfJ
— Iqbal (@Iqtodabal) October 27, 2020
Since when were there boundaries n limits to art? Is DG a God which we can’t touch?
I swear feudalism runs so deep in this country, ppl still freak out at caricatures of leaders. Bet they won’t think twice before laughing at a DAP caricature.
This here. Is bold, fucking art. https://t.co/oWHnjHpBvt
— Muranishi-san (@thehighkage) October 25, 2020
The amount of simps for a failing governing body is appalling. Malaysians love to appeal to false authority as much as they appeal to god for any hopes of guidance.
Our system is such a failure that they see no alternatives but to hope for saviours. Tun M, Abah, DG? Only humans. https://t.co/3PqGBRIVyn
— Najunix ✊ (@Najunix) October 26, 2020
If this was a DAP drawing let’s see if the conservatives Malay would laugh or condemn this piece of art. I’ve said it before, art IS controversial. It’s meant to spark conversations, not soothe your egos. https://t.co/WPbcpdeqkh
— Bryan #rakyatjagarakyat (@bryan_njh) October 25, 2020
Haha. This art work is challenging your ideals of a man you put on a pedestal. And he rightfully deserve to be portrayed as such by the artist. But no, the comments are crying out “Mana akhlak, mana adab” like for once please put your brain to work and think why & beyond decorum https://t.co/53owjTrCgI
— melb (@melblangley) October 25, 2020