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Jan 24, 2008


(The Star) - PETALING JAYA: Former Deputy Home Minister Tan Sri Megat Junid Megat Ayub passed away at 5.25am Thursday at the Pantai Medical Centre in Kuala Lumpur. He was 65.

The body will leave his Kelana Jaya home at 12.30pm for the mosque, then on to the Kiara Cemetery in Damansara here for burial.

Also the former Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister, Megat Junid had been seriously ill for months. He had undergone surgery for prostate cancer in 2004, but the cancer recurred in 2006 and spread to his liver, lung and bones.

Born in Teluk Intan in 1942, the teacher first met former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in the early 1970s when the latter was in political exile for criticising Tunku Abdul Rahman, then Umno president and prime minister.

He was swept away by Dr Mahathir's unconventional political style and soon after left teaching to become a special assistant then political secretary to Dr Mahathir.

He made his political debut as an MP when Dr Mahathir won his first general election as Prime Minister. Two years later he was made Primary Industries Deputy Minister.

In 1986, Dr Mahathir made him his deputy in the Home Affairs Ministry, a post that many agreed was as good as that of Minister given the trust that Dr Mahathir had in him.

His tenure in the ministry was often very controversial and coincided with massive illegal immigrant, the controversial Operation Lalang in 1987 and escalating drug issues.

Megat Junid was finally promoted to Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister in 1997 but held the post for only two years because he lost to a PAS candidate in the Reformasi (reformation) fervour of the 1999 elections.



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