Malaysian ‘Hotpot Datuk’ apologises over assaulting young couple, says willing to accept any punishment from authorities

The Malaysian ‘Datuk’ who was embroiled in an alleged assault against a young couple at a hotpot restaurant in Petaling Jaya has released an apology video regarding the incident.

In a two-minute video, as seen in Malaysian daily The Star’s post on Monday (18 January), the man, identified as Tan, acknowledged on behalf of his friend Ang Lee that their actions had crossed the line.

“This is because at the time of the incident, my friend and I was not rational, and I was in a rage, as I felt like my dignity was challenged when a younger man gave me a warning,” he said in the video.

He also explained how the situation worsened when his friend had interpreted the ruckus wrongly and gone ahead to slap the young man.

Mr Tan also admitted to hitting the young man’s girlfriend, adding that he did it by mistake due to his drunken state.

He apologised to the victims and extended his apologies to all Malaysians who were affected by the incident.

Mr Tan said that he regretted his unruly behaviour, hoping that people will leave his family and friends out of this situation since it happened on his own accord.

The assault happened a week ago on 12 January after Mr Tan became enraged when the young man allegedly told him to lower his voice.

Free Malaysia Today (FMT) earlier reported that police had arrested the Datuk and his friend on 14 January, but both were released on bail two days later after the Petaling Jaya Magistrates’ Court dismissed an application by the police to extend the remand of the two men involved.

It was revealed later that the victim is the son of Perak Chinese Assembly Hall’s deputy president Kwan Foh Kwai. The senior Mr Kwan is a Datuk himself.

Mr Kwan, a well-known figure in the construction industry who formerly held top positions in companies such as Sunway Construction Group Berhad, said that he regretted that the incident has happened.

“In order to prevent the surfacing of unfair posts about my son, I will not deny my son’s identity,” he said.

Netizens were mostly unsatisfied with Mr Tan’s apology video, saying that the Datuk showed a lack of sincerity as his apology was read out straight from a prepared text.

Some also pointed out that the “Datuk” might not have even apologised if his video did not go viral, with one netizen commenting that he did not deserve the title.

A couple of commenters joked that he should have knelt before the victims while apologising and documented the process on social media.

Several netizens also called on the Datuk to be severely punished, as not doing so “will send a wrong message” to others who bear similar honorary titles that they can behave in a similarly harmful manner.

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