Local rapper-singer Namewee (黃明志) has never been afraid to speak what’s on his mind, despite the risk. Unsurprisingly, he’s now ‘trading remarks’ with DAP member Kepong MP Lim Lip Eng.
The duo are arguing over his involvement in a blackmail case that occurred earlier this month. MP Lim is of the opinion that Namewee is merely helping out for the publicity, with the rapper suspecting him of the same.
On 6th June, the police started investigating a blackmail case reported by two young hawkers. The hawkers claimed they had been on their way to work when three policemen extorted RM500 from them. The case was brought to the police’s attention after Kepong MP Lim announced the matter on his Facebook. Since then, MP Lim has been helping the duo by arranging press conferences and being a spokesmen of sorts for them.
On 17th June, the oldest hawker (21) supposedly decided to retract his statement about the blackmail. According to reports, he had not informed MP Lim of the change. Namewee, who had heard of the case, suspected something was wrong. He followed up with the hawker and announced his interest in offering financial help. He later reported on Facebook that “it was as he suspected”. Additionally, he alluded that he would later reveal some ‘content’ that would help the hawker.
During a press conference on 23rd June, the Kepong MP commented on Namewee’s ‘help’. The press conference took place after the police took his statement at the station. Lim made it clear he did not believe that Namewee had pure hearted intentions. “These (internet celebrities) are all trying to increase their click-through rate,” he stated. “If they really wanted to (help), their YouTube ads should be turned off. If they are not removed, they are fooling the public.” Lim is however, happy that the convoluted case can bring public awareness to making false cases. He also declined to give a statement about the police alleging they have CCTV evidence to prove the hawker’s claim wrong.
The rapper was quick to respond to Lim’s remarks on Facebook. He stated he was not an ‘internet celebrity’. He has already made a name for himself globally as a singer and director. Namewee added that even if he was an internet celebrity, helping people was not “his job”. “It’s my job to film, create (and) write songs,” he quipped. “(Helping people) is (Lim’s) “job” and he gets paid.”
In an earlier post, Namewee stated he was using his own money to help the hawker. He also had no need for publicity as he was not a politician running for election. “Politicians are different, what they need is votes,” he wrote. “Otherwise, (why would) they hold a press conference after helping people and contacting the police?” Namewee stated he was only helping to catch the corrupt cops. Although the rapper mentioned no names, he alluded the retort was for the Kepong MP.
The case has become rather convoluted with MP Lim and Namewee doubting each other’s intentions. It is unclear how the 21-year-old hawker feels about everything. With the case being so messy, we sincerely hope justice will be served.