I am privileged to have been given the opportunity to call on Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Islamic Affairs, Maj Gen Dato Jamil Khir Baharom on Tuesday morning. The appointed was initially scheduled for the first week of May. The sudden change of date of appointment took me by surprise, because I knew the minister being new in the chair, would be extremely busy with calls, meetings, visits etc.
I congratulated him for being appointed a minister, and to have shed off his army uniform so suddenly, must have been difficult for him. He is only the second serving military officer to be called to take on the post; the first being Brig Gen Dato Hamid Zainal Abidin (Retired). However, having to accept the appointment, Maj Gen Dato Jamil Khir would have to retire from the Armed Forces, although he still has several more years of active service.
Maj Gen Dato Jamil Khir is a highly popular figure in the Armed Forces, and he regularly features as a panel member in the religious TV programme ‘Forum Perdana Hal Ehwal Islam’. He is a trained paratrooper, one of the earliest officer of the Armed Forces Religious Corps to have successfully recorded sufficient jumps, and to be awarded the paratrooper badge.
His appointment as a minister has made the Armed Forces proud. Certainly, there has to be some special qualities in Maj Gen Dato Jamil Khir, that makes him the obvious choice of the Prime Minister, from among the many others.
Although the Armed Forces have lost an able senior officer, it is however a gain for the government. We, the retired members of the Armed Forces wish Maj Gen Dato Jamil Khir well in his new appointment and hopefully, he will always remember that it is the Armed Forces that has made him to be what he is today…………... a government minister.
CRUSADE AGAINST CORRUPTION