A local businessman-cum-online personality landed in hot water after a video of him giving a motivational talk at a homeless shelter went viral
According to Harian Metro, the clip was filmed on Tuesday, 27 July, at Pusat Transit Gelandangan Kuala Lumpur, a transit home for the homeless.
The man involved is known for running a local fashion line for Muslim women and has over 156,000 followers on Instagram.
He often holds 'motivational' talks for budding entrepreneurs and his recent programme for the homeless was dubbed 'Ubah Hidup' (change your life).
In the clip, the businessman can be seen asking an elderly man in a stern tone, "Answer me honestly, when you were younger, do you regret it? Playing a lot, not taking things seriously, being lazy?"
The elderly man in front of him nodded.
Then, the businessman spoke to the audience, "So now I ask you guys, do you want to regret it once you're older?"
He then questioned his listeners on whether they have ever prayed to God to show them the way to change their life, regardless of their religion.
"What if today God sent me to help you guys?" he added.
The clip was uploaded on his own personal Instagram account but was later reposted and shared across other social media platforms.
Netizens and public figures criticised the businessman for his harsh tone and empathised with the elderly man in front of him
Malaysian actor and comedian Harith Iskander tweeted in response to the clip, "Do you know the pakcik's life before this? You were by his side for the past few years? Even so, what gives you the right to berate another human being? Maybe I am not getting the complete picture. Please correct me. I hope God sends you this message."
Meanwhile, actor Aaron Aziz wrote on Facebook, "Salam brother. If you want to help a person, don't dig into anyone's past. I don't know who you are, but you have to mind your manners. Whether they're homeless, drug addicts, or beggars, if you're doing charity, this is not the f----n way. Don't insult people's dignity, their spirit, their standings, their fate. If you think that God sent you to 'help' people in need, then God can also make you suffer. You remember that."
Semboyan 1Malaysia Consumers Association (Semboyan 1Malaysia) chairman Yusuf Azmi also posted on Facebook and wrote, "Who are you? This is what happens when you think you're so great. Lost respect. Casually raising your voice to the elderly, supposedly giving motivation. You went to a homeless shelter, and then you want to minimise them? Who are you to question this pakcik's life regrets? You don't know his life struggles over the past 64 years."
"Today God sent Semboyan to advise you, please don't be arrogant. Remember, God can take back his favours given to you at any time. We have been there before to hand out aid and you do not have the right to speak that way to the pakcik. People like you ruin the image of Islam! Before giving a motivational talk, go read a book on manners. No matter how successful, you have to mind your manners. Do not insult while advising. You go apologise to the pakcik or I will meet you in person," he added.
Besides that, the police have issued a fine against the businessman for not wearing a face mask during the event
"At 5.20pm today (28 July), he was summoned to the Dang Wangi police headquarters to have his statement recorded," Dang Wangi district police chief ACP Mohamad Zainal Abdullah told New Straits Times last night.
He then added that the motivational speaker was fined RM1,500 according to Rule 17(1) of the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures within the Infected Local Areas) Regulations 2021.
The man has since issued a public apology
He wrote on Instagram, "If the clip looks like I was being rude with the pakcik then I truly apologise. Honestly, before, during, and after I spoke, I approached the pakcik and other homeless folks kindly and they were all happy that day."
He then explained that he intends to meet with the elderly man in the near future to seek forgiveness.
The entrepreneur also apologise for not wearing a face mask and confirmed that he was called in by the Dang Wangi police headquarters and has been issued a compound.
According to him, on the day of the event, he was invited to speak by the Pusat Transit Gelandangan Kuala Lumpur and Yayasan Kebajikan Negara (YKN) to help the homeless who are in the phase of kickstarting their business.
"However, I realise that I shouldn't have spoken in that tone to those older than me. I apologise, this is a big lesson for me," he added.