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Sunday, August 6, 2017

NST chief editor attacked by assailant on motorbike, now recovering

KOTA KINABALU - Pung Chen Choon, the New Sabah Times chief editor is recovering following an early morning assault and has told police that he was attacked by a motorcyclist as he was returning home on Saturday after ‘kupi-kupi’ with friends.

Police are now hot on the trail of a suspect, said to be a Chinese and are studying closed circuit television (CCTV) to try and trace the man who fled on his motorcycle after assaulting the 65-year old veteran newsman.

CC Pung, as he is popularly known, told police he stopped at a petrol station along Jalan Kolam when he felt that he was being trailed after a night out with friends at Lido for coffee.

“He got out of his car to confront the motorcyclist who had also gone into the petrol station and spoke in Chinese as to why the man was following him,” Assistant Commissioner Chandra Muthu, the City police chief said in a statement Sunday.

“The suspect did not bother to reply but removed his helmet and swung it at Pung’s face causing the veteran newsman to faint and lose consciousness. The suspect then fled the scene.”

Pung, who suffered a badly bruised eye, swelling on the jaw and left cheek following the uninstigated attack, was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital 1 in an unconscious state by an ambulance called by a pump attendant who saw the incident.

Police were also at the scene, said ACP Chandra, who added that Pung’s son who was notified of the incident, later lodged a police report.

The police chief said Pung regained consciousness at about noon Saturday and is in a stable condition, though he is being held at the QEH’s neurological ward for further treatment and observation.

Joseph Leong, another veteran newsman and public relations practitioner, in a WhatsApp posting said Pung was making a speedy recovery.

According to the ACP Chandra, Pung does not know the reason why he was attacked.

Police are now calling for witnesses to come forward and help in the investigations. They are also hoping that the CCTV recording would help to provide some clues as to the identity of the assailant.

Pung has worked in various capacities as a newspaperman since the early 70s.

He had only recently be appointed as chief editor of New Sabah Times.

He is also active in social work, being a member of the Lions Club of KK Host.

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